TIME TO ASSESS ARSENAL’S RESULTS WITH THE TOP FIVE CLUBS SINCE 2008 – THE DATE SOME FANS BELIEVE OUR DECLINE STARTED – AND COINCIDING WITH CITY BEING BOUGHT OUT – WHAT BETTER WAY TO ANALISE THIS THAN STARTING WITH THE CHAMPIONS MANCHESTER CITY?
A brief history of our results with Manchester City since they gained promotion to the PL in the 2001 -02 season.
After losing the 1981 cup final, the club went in to serious decline and were relegated to the third tier of English football for the first time in their history, in 1998.
They have won the PL seven times, the FA cup six times, the EFL cup seven times, the Community Shield six times and the European Cup Winners Cup once.
Manchester City were taken over by the Abu Dhabi United Group in June 2008 for a reported £81.6 million, they then managed to get the required 73% share required for a full buyout and, obviously, full control of the club.
With this new found wealth, they began their takeover (financially) of the football world, battling at this time, just the might of the Chelsea owner, as to who brought the best players.
Needless to say, they came calling at the doors of Arsene Wenger and signed Clichy (£7,000,000), Touré (15,000,000), Adebayor (£25,000,000), Nasri (£25,000,000), and later, Bacary Sagna on a free transfer.
In all, our club received over £72,000,000 for the above players…. players deemed as not good enough by some of our own fans, despite one being part of the Invincibles!!!!
But this was just a tiny proportion of the money Manchester City spent in order to become the driving force of English football and, as an example, since 2016 to 2021 they have spent a reported and staggering £870,000,000 on 59 players and the spending seems to have no signs of drying up.
So, how did we fare, as a club, while this was going on with City on a head-to-head basis?
Well, from the year of their promotion back to the PL and up and until the takeover, we had played them fourteen times – won twelve – drawn one – lost one…under AW.
From the 2008 season to 2018 we had played them nineteen times – won eight – lost eleven…under Arsene Wenger.
Since then, we have played them seven times – won one – lost six…under UE and MA.
Two of our most memorable wins were the two semi-finals under AW and MA, culminating in the FA cup final wins over Chelsea on both occasions, both after the takeover of course.
The last time we beat them in the PL? 2016 under AW.
In summary, until the buyout by the United Group (aptly described by AW as a country takeover) they were in our shadow completely and, even today, the results show us as follows:
Played 203 – Won 98 – Drawn 45 – Lost 60 – We are also the team that City have lost the most to in league competition… 85 games!!
I suggest it will take a while longer for Manchester City to catch us up and record as many trophy wins as we have.
So, when people say our record against City has been downhill since 2008:
- Have another look at the ACTUAL results.
- Take time to digest the enormous shift that the takeover made to the PL.
- Remember that City honed in on our players as soon as they were able to spend big and how that hampered our club’s progress.
- Be aware that, since AW left, the results have been worse than in our entire history against, probably, the luckiest club in the world (along with Chelsea) to have owners who are willing to spend to achieve the success they have.
Next in line, Manchester United, then Chelsea, Liverpool and the Spuds…. let’s see how we fared before and after AW, using the facts rather than fiction.
Facts and figures taken from Wikipedia – euro rivals – premier league websites.