Squad Depth may be why Man City wins the EPL

Someone tweeted a Footplr Lineup link to Manchester City’s first and second teams the other day, and I had never really thought about how deep City really is this year. They are two deep in world class players at just about every position, with little drop-off at just about all of their outfield players.

photo (13)

So I ran this through my Transfer Evaluator and found something really scary: the evaluator actually has City’s second team as stronger than the first. I didn’t break down exactly why it likes this squad better, but I know it likes Navas over De Bruyne, and apparently likes Otamendi better with Demichelis than Kompany. It also likes Sagna a lot more than Zabaleta (and I don’t disagree), which I think explains most of the differences. Take a look and see the difference (click to zoom in):

city 2nd team

That’s about a five points gain from the second team to the first. Arsenal doesn’t seem to have the same depth, and this could be the difference, especially once injuries/suspensions start and in the crowded Christmas break.1

  1. I know Football Manager isn’t anywhere near real life, but I typically try to have basically two separate squads: a cup squad and a regular squad. I don’t want there to be any real drop-off between the two, and in Football Manager world you can do that sort of thing because world class players don’t mind being rotated out for half the season. Seems like City has actually pulled that sort of depth off, which is even tougher given the EPL’s roster limits.

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