How does this title race compare to the one in 2018-19?
The title race in 2018-19 was the ultimate pressure cooker test i have witnessed. The most surprising fact was that neither of City or Liverpool wilted under the immense pressure and the footballing world was stunned with the fact that both the teams maintained a perfect record in such difficult circumstances. This title race takes me back to the memories of that season and still gives me goosebumps remembering the way we won a title which i thought was gone after we had lost to Newcastle days after defeating Liverpool.
Since, we have come out on the right side of that title race in 2018-19, there is almost an urge in all of us to draw parallels between both the title races. But the deeper you think about it, you begin to feel the subtle differences between both the seasons. Let us have a glimpse on the factors that differentiate both the title races
MOMENTUM WITH LIVERPOOL
In the 2018-19 title race, Liverpool were almost 4 points ahead of us at the start of February and by the middle of march, we were leading them by one point. This seems completely reverse in the race this season. It was us having the advantage over them and defeats to Spurs and a draw with Crystal Palace has reduced our lead drastically.
Imagine that you are coming off a losing streak or have a couple of draws. This really impacts you in tough situations. You will not be having that belief and mindset that you can get over the line, no matter what the circumstances might be. I firmly believe that momentum is key to getting over the line.
I am in no way stating that City can’t get over the line. But, we must be very careful in the next couple of fixtures. The Atletico Madrid semifinal has definitely affected our momentum and we need to get back to winning ways as fast as possible. This City team has been through far more difficult times than they have gone through in the previous week and i have immense confidence in their ability to fight till the end.
LACK OF A STRIKER LIKE AGUERO
I know that City’s lack of a number 9 has been the central talking point since that defeat to Liverpool, but it is almost impossible to compare both the title races without underlining the importance of Kun Aguero.
I still cannot forget that near post finish to beat Allison at the Etihad. How many strikers manage to do that to Allison? That Liverpool match was surely the turning point of that season’s title race. If Liverpool would have won that tie, they would have gone 7 points clear that season.
Then there was the match against a rigid Burnley side that had a 0-0 written all over it. It was Aguero’s toe poke goal that decided the tie in our favour. We have surely missed a poacher like that this season. Surely the title race would have been over by now with someone like Kun in our ranks this season.
Then, there was the drama against Brighton on the last day. We were 1-0 down and then it was Kun who had again rescued us from that situation. So, this month for City is gonna be very interesting and i am already feeling the pressure when thinking about how we will fill that void in this title race. There will be tough situations in this run in and we will need goals from somewhere.
For me, this title race feels far more different to the one we had in that 2018-19 season. We are under much more pressure this time around and i am confident enough in our team spirit and mentality to fight this till the end