How Man City will line up in 2022-23

Suraj Radia
Suraj Radia 5 Aug 2022 19:35 BST 3 min read
Erling Haaland in training with Norway

Manchester City are hoping to secure their fifth Premier League title in six years as they enter the new season with a squad looking for domestic and European dominance.

Pep Guardiola has spent just under £100 million this summer on just two players in Erling Haaland from Dortmund and midfielder Kalvin Phillips from Leeds, while Julian Alvarez has joined the squad after signing from River Plate in January and seeing out the season in Argentina.

With City having just pipped Liverpool to the Premier League title by a single point last season, Guardiola has opted for quality over quantity to increase the gap on their rivals.

But have City improved enough from last season to compete for another Premier League title as well as push for their first ever Champions League trophy? FootballTransfers takes a look at their projected team for the upcoming season.

Small changes, big difference

City operated the majority of last season without an out-and-out striker, with Gabriel Jesus, Raheem Sterling and Riyadh Mahrez all spending time up front.

Of that trio, Jesus and Sterling have left the club, meaning City have lost the source of 21 of their 99 goals last season, although they have brought in perhaps the best possible replacement to lead their line.

Haaland was an early arrival at the Etihad Stadium this summer, with City activating the Norwegian’s £51m release clause at Dortmund and securing arguably the best young striker in world football.

After scoring 62 goals in 67 games in the Bundesliga, Haaland will certainly lead the line for his new side as Guardiola looks to pivot back to a system featuring a true centre forward.

Alvarez, who City paid for £14m in January, netted on his debut in the Community Shield defeat to Liverpool and belief is sky-high in the 22-year-old, having scored 31 goals in his last 52 games for River.

However, the Argentine forward is likely to be eased into first-team action, with Mahrez and Phil Foden set to occupy the wide spots in City’s front line.

man city line up

Phillips, meanwhile, has joined for £42m as a direct replacement for long-serving captain Fernandinho, who left City after nine years at the club.

The former Leeds ball-winner is likely to be a backup to Rodri at defensive midfield, however he could also feature further up the pitch in the absence of Kevin de Bruyne or Bernardo Silva.

City are still in the market for defender after selling backup left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko and anyone they bring in will expected to be a bench option, with Guardiola likely to stick with the same defence that conceded the joint-least amount of goals last season.

Ultimately City’s first choice line-up has only seen Haaland come in, however the 22-year-old’s arrival is the most significant upgrade Guardiola could have hoped for as his side continue to operate as one of the most feared sides in world football.