So, the club with no history before 2008 will have another blank space in its record books with the news that they’re to be banned from European competition for two years for breaching Financial Fair-Play rules.
While reports of police being called to Arsene Wenger’s house due to raucous celebrations are yet to be substantiated, it looks like this season will be Pep Guardiola’s last shot at drumming up a European legacy beyond boosting the sales of questionable continental knitwear in the Greater Manchester area.
Did it really have to be this way though?
City have built a footballing machine in the last decade that smashed domestic records and looked unstoppable prior to Klopp’s charge, but for every Kevin De Bruyne there’s been plenty of, err, Kevin De Brainfarts.
Add up the fees paid for Sky Blue flops over the last decade and it’s hard not to wonder if they could’ve stayed within UEFA’s rules if they’d just, I dunno, not signed so much sh*te.
Wilfried Bony – £25m from Swansea
If ever there was an argument against January deals, Bony is surely it.
He’d made his name with Swansea, leading the league goalscoring charts in 2014, and with City looking for attacking options, he seemed a decent fit. But his arrival with the first team quad was delayed by involvement in the African Cup of Nations in 2015, during which he was injured, naturally, so he ended up making just 10 appearances during the run-in for the Sky Blues.
It didn’t get much better in his next campaign, and Pep Guardiola proved less of a fan that Manuel Pellegrini, so the Ivorian was frozen out and has since togged out for Stoke, Swansea again, and Al-Arabi in Qatar.
Eliaquim Mangala – £32m from Porto
The French centre half joined City in the summer of 2014 as one of the most promising young defenders in Europe.
Whether it was Otamendi-before-Otamedi Martín Demichelis’ general crapness rubbing off on him or the worry that having Joe Hart play behind you prompts in any centre-back, he never reached his potential with the Citizens.
Injuries and lack of form saw him shipped off on loan spells to Everton and Valencia, before permanently sealing a move to the Spanish club for free in August 2019.
Jesus Navas – £15m from Sevilla
The Spanish winger made his name for his local club, Sevilla, before finally making a big move to City in 2014 once he’d come to terms with his chronic homesickness. While we’re all for personal growth and overcoming challenges, we would wonder now whether it was really worth it?
Navas was part of the 2013/14 league winning side but rarely dazzled as he had for his previous side. Once Pep showed up he was shifted into appearances at full-back before being shifted back home, where he now holds the record appearances for the Andalucian club.
Jack Rodwell – £12m from Everton
People say that you can double the asking price for any young English player in the transfer market, though you’d wonder who in their right mind valued Jack Rodwell at £6m given the way his career has panned out.
Highly-touted coming through at Everton, he looked like a future City captain when they did this deal in 2012, but two seasons in the lighter shade of blue was all he got before being shunted on to Sunderland.
The highlight of his stay with the Black Cats was a cameo role in the Sunderland Til I Die documentary series, where he continued to take in £70k per week while playing in the reserves.
Jack Rodwell's contract at Sunderland has been cancelled. Safe to say the fans aren't taking it well… pic.twitter.com/S4AYpG3ojP
— Paddy Power (@paddypower) June 27, 2018
Stevan Jovetic – £23m from Fiorentina
The Montenegrin was another of Pellegrini’s mistakes – PSG, Liverpool, Madrid and Barcelona should all have the ex-City manager on their Christmas card list if this ban holds up.
He was bedevilled by injuries after moving from Serie A, and made 44 appearances in all competitions, netting 11 times, before being moved on to everyone’s favourite Premier League rejects dumping ground, Inter Milan.
He’s now plugging away for AS Monaco in Ligue 1, where he’s said to be a firm favourite among the ex-F1 drivers and retired models who make up the Monegasque Ultras.
Fernando – £12m from Porto
Another swiftly sidelined when Guardiola arrived, the Brazilian, to the delight of many commentators, initially formed a tandem with Fernandinho in the City midfield after arriving in 2014.
Where the ‘Dinho has proven his worth by bossing the central third and occasionally dropping back to centre-half under Pep, his almost-namesake played at City for three years and only had a League Cup winners medal to show for it, before heading off to Galatasaray at a significant loss,.
Which could also describe many who watched him play at the Etihad – was he really Brazilian at all?