Power Ranking Every Manchester City Player from the 2013/14 EPL Season

Rob PollardFeatured ColumnistMay 12, 2014

Power Ranking Every Manchester City Player from the 2013/14 EPL Season

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    Manchester City ended the 2013-14 season as champions for the second time in three seasons, capping a memorable first campaign in charge for Manuel Pellegrini.

    There's little doubt that City played the best football and were worthy winners, but which players stood out in the title win?

    Here we rank every City player to appear in the Premier League this season, from those on the periphery, to the players central to their success.

23. Dedryck Boyata

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    Clint Hughes/Getty Images

    Appearances: 1

    Goals: 0

    Yellow Cards: 0

    Red Cards: 0

    Dedryck Boyata only played once in the league—the 1-0 home win over Palace in December—and therefore didn't qualify for a medal, with Premier League rules stipulating a player must have made at least five appearances to earn one.

    Boyata has never looked fully comfortable at the highest level, his lack of quality on the ball a major obstacle in his development. It's doubtful he will ever force his way into City's first-team plans.
    His contract is up this summer, but with the club struggling to comply with the homegrown quota for next season, he may well be offered a 12-month extension, according to Sami Mokbel in the Mail.

22. Micah Richards

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    Appearances: 2

    Goals: 0

    Yellow Cards: 0

    Red Cards: 0

    It's been another injury-ravaged season for Micah Richards, and he is set to depart the club after a wonderful 13-year period that saw him come through City's academy and go on to play an integral part of the club's first league title in 44 years.

    In that season, Richards was one of the best players at City and consistently performed at a high level. The attacking side of his game was outstanding, and Roberto Mancini worked closely with him to improve the defensive side of his game.

    He looked set to be an integral part of City for years to come, but a knee injury at the start of the following campaign kept him out for the majority of the season, and he's never managed to recover. A series of subsequent injuries have ruined his progress.

    It's a desperately sad situation for a player who is loved by everyone at City.

21. Jack Rodwell

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    Alex Livesey/Getty Images
    Appearances: 5

    Goals: 0

    Yellow Cards: 0

    Red Cards: 0

    It simply hasn't worked out for Jack Rodwell at City. Under Mancini, he showed glimpses of his quality and looked capable of becoming a decent player for the club, but he struggles with muscular injuries that prevent him getting a run in the side and establishing any kind of rhythm. 

    He's made just five league appearances this term and had little impact. It wouldn't be a surprise to see him depart this summer.

20. Costel Pantilimon

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    Stu Forster/Getty Images
    Appearances: 7

    Clean Sheets: 3

    Yellow Cards: 1

    Red Cards: 0

    With Joe Hart very much out of form, Pellegrini made the decision to bring in Costel Pantilimon at the beginning of November to allow the England No.1 time to refocus. It was masterstroke from Pellegrini.

    Pantilimon performed fairly well during his six-game stay in the City goal, but he ultimately didn't show enough to suggest he could be a long-term option for the club. He flaps at crosses and lacks a commanding presence.

19. Joleon Lescott

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    Appearances: 10

    Goals: 0

    Yellow Cards: 0

    Red Cards: 0

    Another player who, like Richards, was a key member of City's last title win who will leave in the summer with the best wishes of everyone connected with the club.

    Lescott started the first three games of the season and looked set to play a big role, but he soon fell out of favour. Pellegrini's system demands every player is comfortable in possession, an area Lescott has always struggled with.

    He will always be remembered at City for his part in ending the club's 44-year wait for a league title, but he will now move on and find first-team football elsewhere. He's too good to sit on the bench at City.

18. Matija Nastasic

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    Appearances: 13

    Goals: 0

    Yellow Cards: 4

    Red Cards: 0

    After a miraculous debut season, Matija Nastasic has come back down to earth with a bump this time around. A mystery knee injury has restricted his involvement hugely, and even when he was fit his form was nowhere near the level we had come to expect from him.

    He, perhaps more than anyone else, will benefit from the summer break. He will need to regain his fitness and focus in order to compete for his place alongside Vincent Kompany next season.

17. Stevan Jovetic

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    Appearances: 13

    Goals: 3

    Yellow Cards: 1

    Red Cards: 0

    In terms of raw talent, very few in the City squad can rival Stevan Jovetic, but his first season in England has been held back by a succession of injuries.

    If he'd managed more games, there's little doubt he would be much higher in this list. He's got two great feet, exceptional speed of thought, superlative vision and scores goals.

    He's different from every other forward at City. Jovetic likes to drop deep and turn and run at the defence, a quality that can raise his teammates when things aren't going their way. City have a top-quality player in their midst, and they will be desperate to see him play more next term.

16. Gael Clichy

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    Appearances: 20

    Goals: 0

    Yellow Cards: 1

    Red Cards: 0

    After a fine season last time out, it's fair to say Gael Clichy's form has regressed this season, unusual considering almost every other player in City's squad has improved immeasurably under Pellegrini. Quite why this is the case remains somewhat of a mystery, but he must use the summer to rest and refocus so he can rediscover his best form next season.

    Most worryingly, he appears to have lost a yard of pace—the attribute that has defined his career in England. He's been a liability defensively, and he's offered less going forward than he previously had. However, there's no question he still has the quality to be a superb left-back for City, if he can regain his confidence.

15. Javi Garcia

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    Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
    Appearances: 29

    Goals: 0

    Yellow Cards: 7

    Red Cards: 0

    This season has been a huge success story for Javi Garcia. A player fiercely criticised during his first season at the club, Garcia has established himself as an important squad player capable of doing a valuable job in the defensive midfield role.

    His excellent showing in the 3-2 win away at Bayern Munich in the Champions League was the catalyst, and from there he's gone from strength to strength. He'll never be a guaranteed starter or a world-class star, but he's turned around what was becoming a difficult situation with the club's fans on his back.

    In the final few weeks, Fernandinho was carrying a knock, and in came Garcia to replace him. He provided a defensive solidity in midfield that was key to helping City get over the line.

14. Alvaro Negredo

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images
    Appearances: 32

    Goals: 9

    Yellow Cards: 1

    Red Cards: 0

    His form may have nosedived dramatically in the second half of the season, but Alvaro Negredo did enough early in the season to ensure a high placing on this list.

    He set the league alight early on, his power and pace too much to handle for most defenders, many of whom weren't familiar with his game. However, he has struggled in recent months, and he will be desperate to improve on his nine league goals next season.

13. Jesus Navas

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images
    Appearances: 30

    Goals: 4

    Yellow Cards: 0

    Red Cards: 0

    City were crying out for pace and width last season and the arrival of Jesus Navas solved both problems in one fell swoop. He instantly gave them a new dimension and solved the predictability that held them back during Mancini's final year in charge.

    Navas has had a very good first season at City, and although he is yet to force his way into Pellegrini's first XI on a regular basis, he has been excellent addition to the squad. His seven assists are proof of his influence, and he will be a big part of City's plans again next season.

12. James Milner

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    Alex Livesey/Getty Images
    Appearances: 31

    Goals: 1

    Yellow Cards: 3

    Red Cards: 0

    City's "Mr. Reliable" and firm fans' favourite James Milner had another superb season, and he will now go to the World Cup in high spirits after playing a vital role in the run-in that saw them win their last five games on their way to the title.

    Milner is underrated by everyone outside of City, but his own fans and teammates recognise his brilliance. He's full of running and energy, never letting the side down in terms of his industry, but he also possesses great technical ability, too.

    Like every City manager before him, Pellegrini has recognised Milner's qualities and knows his side is better with him involved regularly.

11. Joe Hart

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    Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
    Appearances: 31

    Clean Sheets: 13

    Yellow Cards: 1

    Red Cards: 0

    After a dreadful start to the season featuring a series of costly blunders, Joe Hart was dropped for seven matches before being brought back into the first team in December. It was a rest that proved useful, with Hart's performance level improving dramatically upon his return to the side.

    His save at Everton in City's crucial 3-2 win will go down as his best of the season, but his all-round game has improved in the second half of the campaign. His distribution is still a worry, as is his ability to deal with crosses into the box, but his reemergence after a difficult start was a key factor in City's title win.

10. Aleksandar Kolarov

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    Alex Livesey/Getty Images
    Appearances: 30

    Goals: 1

    Yellow Cards: 2

    Red Cards: 0

    The majority of City's squad have seen an upturn in form under the guidance of Pellegrini, but Aleksandar Kolarov has arguably been the biggest improvement. He has managed to establish himself as City's No.1 left-back—unthinkable last season when he was struggling so much to perform.

    He has been superb going forward, contributing an impressive seven assists from full-back while driving City's attacking play down the left flank. His defensive capabilities have also improved, and he has played a big role this year.

    It seemed almost certain last summer that he would depart, but it's unlikely now given his excellent season.

9. Martin Demichelis

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images
    Appearances: 27

    Goals: 2

    Yellow Cards: 6

    Red Cards: 0

    Has there ever been a sharper reversal of opinion on a player? Martin Demichelis was ridiculed and scapegoated earlier this season, but his form in recent months has been outstanding, and he can claim to have played a significant part in City's recent wins that saw them clinch the title.

    His reading of the game, for the most part, negates his lack of pace, and his aerial ability is the best at the club. He is also an excellent communicator in a defence that sometimes lacks voices.

    His display at Hull will go down as one of the finest individual performances by a City player this season in what was a truly vital win. 

8. Edin Dzeko

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    Alex Livesey/Getty Images
    Appearances: 31

    Goals: 16

    Yellow Cards: 4

    Red Cards: 0

    Edin Dzeko has often struggled to convince the City fans he's a truly world-class player. Inconsistent displays characterised by a poor first touch and dreadful body language meant the jury has remained out on him. However, his performances since January, and, more crucially, his goals have convinced those who doubted him that he is well worth his place in this City squad. 

    His 16 league goals demonstrate his ability to deliver in front of goal, but it's the importance of them that makes them so valuable. His strikes against Crystal Palace, Everton and Aston Villa were all of huge significance to City, and they swung the title race in their favour.

7. Vincent Kompany

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    Clint Hughes/Getty Images
    Appearances: 28

    Goals: 4

    Yellow Cards: 6

    Red Cards: 1

    There's little doubt that Vincent Kompany is one of the finest defenders in world football, and he leads Manchester City with distinction, both on and off the field. He's had another excellent season.

    The reason he hasn't placed higher here is due to him missing a larger chunk of the first half the season. He missed three matches after getting injured in the opening game against Newcastle and then missed a further six a few weeks later.

    He also made some errors that, thankfully for City, didn't prove costly, but overall he has, once again, been superb. City are lucky to have such a talented player.

6. Samir Nasri

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    Alex Livesey/Getty Images
    Appearances: 34

    Goals: 7

    Yellow Cards: 3

    Red Cards: 0

    Other than a four-game period after suffering an injury away Newcastle, Samir Nasri has been an ever-present player for City this term, establishing a reputation as a key midfielder for the club and one of the finest in the Premier League.

    Quite why the France national side have decided to omit him from their World Cup squad is a mystery, given the quality of his displays this season. Touch, skill, vision, goals and creativity have been displayed in abundance—a remarkable turnaround from last season, when he was low on confidence and on the periphery of matches.

    The way he has linked up with David Silva has been wonderful to watch.

5. Pablo Zabaleta

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    Alex Livesey/Getty Images

    Appearances: 35

    Goals: 1

    Yellow Cards: 11

    Red Cards: 0

    After his club Player of the Year award last season, Pablo Zabaleta was once again one of City's best players this campaign. He only missed three matches, and has been consistently excellent throughout—defensively sound and superb going forward.

    Without much challenge to his supremacy as first-choice right-back given Richards' injury woes, it would have been easy for complacency to affect his form, but he remains as focused and determined as ever. He's the best right-back in the Premier League and one of the best in Europe.

    And it isn't just his technical ability that makes him so valuable. His leadership on the field cannot be underestimated, and his status with the fans is hugely important to the culture of the club.

4. Sergio Aguero

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    Alex Livesey/Getty Images
    Appearances: 23

    Goals: 17

    Yellow Cards: 4

    Red Cards: 0

    But for a succession of injuries, it's likely Sergio Aguero would have topped this list, but he was limited to just 23 league games all season.

    His strike rate is impressive, and up until the injury he sustained away at Spurs at the end of January, he was in the form of his life, terrorising defences with his pace, unplayable for the most part.

    City will be desperate to keep him fit next season. Their league success may well have been wrapped up long ago had he played over 30 matches during the campaign. He's developed into one of the best forwards in Europe.

3. Fernandinho

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    Appearances: 33

    Goals: 5

    Yellow Cards: 8

    Red Cards: 0

    Fernandinho has fully justified the hefty transfer fee City paid Shakhtar for his signature this summer. He's the complete midfielder, capable of stopping the opposition, launching attacks with his passing and scoring goals himself.

    His energy is probably his most impressive trait, but his range of passing and ability to tackle mark him out as one of the finest midfielders in the country.

    He now heads to Brazil for the World Cup before returning to City to ensure their upcoming title defence is better than their last one.

2. David Silva

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    Alex Livesey/Getty Images
    Appearances: 27

    Goals: 7

    Yellow Cards: 5

    Red Cards: 0

    David Silva—the finest footballer in City's history—played a pivotal role in the club's league success, particularly with a series of excellent performances in the final few months after moving into the No.10 role.

    Silva glides through matches, picking passes no one else can see, let alone execute, with his ability to remain in possession of the ball unrivalled in the league. No matter how many men Silva has around him when he receives the ball, he always emerges to find a pass.

    He's a beautiful player to watch, and he remains City's most important attacking player.

1. Yaya Toure

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images
    Appearances: 35

    Goals: 20

    Yellow Cards: 4

    Red Cards: 0

    Having missed just three league games all season and weighing in with 20 goals from midfield, it's difficult to look past Yaya Toure as City's best-performing player this term. The improvements he's made to his game since joining City have been remarkable, with this season his finest to date.

    His pace, power and drive from midfield makes him a unique talent, but 20 league goals now makes him invaluable. He can very often decide a midfield battle on his own, allowing City to get a grip of matches and dictate.

    There's very little Toure can't do. He takes excellent set pieces, he tackles well, scores and is capable of lung-busting runs from deep. If anyone requires a snapshot of Toure's ability, his goal against Aston Villa in the penultimate game of the season sums him up perfectly.