What I Learned From Manchester City’s Premier League Triumph

May 13, 2019

You’ve probably heard the name Pep Guardiola a lot in the last few days. Whoever was saying it was referring to this guy.

Pep has a big reputation as one of the greatest football managers in the world right now and he may have assembled the most intimidating team in England’s history. But if you were anywhere close to a sports fan or one of those many spots where men drink beer and shout at television screens over the weekend, you would have gotten a sense of just how close the race for the Premier League title went this season.

The most watched sports league in the world, the English Premier League is many different things to different people. To some, it’s the reason why bae’s beer belly is exponentially growing in timber and calibre. For others, it’s an inconvenience that prompts noise and arguments. But for the billions who watch it around the world, it’s a 38-week long game of transfers, tactics, heroes, villains, goals and misses.

This year’s edition of the league has given us more twists than a bowl of Spaghetti. And after some intense drama that ran into the final day, Manchester City was eventually crowned as champions. But considering how much noise we’ve made about it, what did we, as Nigerians learn from this football drama…

Here are 3 things I’ve personally been reminded of:

  • All Mallam With Him Kettle

All mallam with him kettle is a phrase that loosely means that everyone is responsible for themselves. How does this apply to the EPL? Well, just weeks ago, Liverpool, armed with Mo’ Salah and Sadio Mane were 7 points ahead of everyone else and seemed certain to win the league.

Then the table started ‘turnioniown‘ until going into the final round of matches, Manchester City was ahead by one point. Liverpool needed another EPL club, Brighton to do them a favour by stopping City in their final match of the season. It was highly unlikely but 10 minutes into their match, Brighton scored. It seemed a miracle was in the offing. Then in the space of forty minutes, City scored four ruthless goals. I imagine Brighton’s coach sending this text to the Liverpool manager.

  • Awoof Dey Run Belle

As a Chelsea fan, this story holds much importance for me. Is it a lesson that involves Chelsea? Of course not. Where’s the fun in minding your own business. Join me as we go to Manchester United where after a rough start to the season, the legendary Jose Mourinho was fired. In his place, United drafted in a former player, Ole Gunnar Solksjaer who quickly won his first six games on the trot. “Ole’s at the Wheel” – read the tweets from the United fans. The shouts for Ole got louder after his team managed to overturn a deficit and beat PSG against all odds in the Champions League.

“Ole’s at the Wheel as he masterminds six successive victories” H/T Bleacher Report

Then the winning streak turned into a losing one. United ended their season by losing to two teams already assured of relegation. The saviour that was promised has turned into a scarecrow – eternal proof that early success can blind you to other problems – in this case, Ole’s inexperience.

  • If You No Get Money, Hide Your Face

Let’s play a game? You know what? Let’s not. Remember when I said Pep Guardiola has assembled the most intimidating team in the Premier League. Guess how he did it? With Money. In the last 5 years, Manchester City has spent 563 million pounds on new players. By comparison, Huddersfield which had been certain of coming in last with weeks to go, have spent a paltry 73 million pounds in that period. Go figure.

The EPL, quite simply, is a place where money (and good management) can get you all you need, which is basically how the entirety of human existence works. Moral Lesson: If you don’t have the racks to compete, better be bringing something else to the table.

Small Doctor is a philosopher for all ages; you people just don’t know it yet.

Segun Akande

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