Gary Neville rates current Man City side the greatest in Premier League era

Gary Neville rates current Man City side the greatest in Premier League era

Gary Neville, an eight-time title winner with Manchester United, has admitted Manchester City could be the greatest Premier League team ever.

Pep Guardiola’s men clinched back-to-back crowns on Sunday, edging out Liverpool by a single point after winning all of their final 14 games.

They have now won the league four times in eight years to establish themselves as the dominant force in English football, and could complete an unprecedented domestic treble in Saturday’s FA Cup final.

Asked if they could be considered the best team in the Premier League era, former United and England defender Neville told Sky Sports News: “I think so. There are people who’ll debate that, I would think, but what they have done in this last two years…

“Last year was a great achievement, but when you win back-to-back titles amassing the points that they have, withstanding that challenge that they’ve had from Liverpool, which was relentless right the way to the very end, it makes them a great side.

“Pep Guardiola has come to England and people will mention the Champions League, but I would dismiss that, really.

“To do what he’s done here now in this last two years is unprecedented, it’s incredible. The points tallies are just out of this world and the football he’s played as well, so I think you can say, yes, this is the greatest.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has guided the club to back-to-back titles (Nick Potts/PA)
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has guided the club to back-to-back titles (Nick Potts/PA)

“I like our teams, I like the Chelsea team – there will be people who’ll say, ‘Who is the greatest?’, but what they have done in terms of points, you can’t deny.”

In guiding City to their latest success, former Barcelona and Bayern Munich coach Guardiola simply enhanced his own reputation and in Neville’s opinion, should be regarded alongside the aristocrats of the English game.

Neville said: “Pep Guardiola, he’s come to England – like I say, there will be people who will question that Manchester City have fallen short in the Champions League, but what he achieved yesterday, and obviously he has a chance next week to win a domestic treble – puts him up there with the great managers.

“Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho, Sir Alex Ferguson and now Pep Guardiola really are the great managers of the Premier League era.

“I don’t know how long he’s going to stay in England – I’m sure the other clubs will be hoping he leaves quite quickly – but if he stayed for another two or three years, then he could go on and win another two or three championships easily.”

If there were celebrations in the blue half of Manchester, there was disappointment on Merseyside as Liverpool came up agonisingly short despite losing just one league game all season.

Champions League glory could yet soothe that pain, but Neville insists Liverpool deserve huge credit too after a thrilling campaign.

Liverpool this year, they're far better than I ever imagined, they've done far more than I ever imagined.

He said: “When I think of the Barcelona team that Pep Guardiola had eight, nine years ago, it stopped Manchester United winning three Champions League titles just because they were so good, and Liverpool can just look at it pragmatically with a philosophical view that they came up against a great side.

“Liverpool this year, they’re far better than I ever imagined, they’ve done far more than I ever imagined.

“I never thought that that squad was capable of mounting a challenge for the title like they have and the Champions League.”

- Press Association

More on this topic

Josh Kroenke admits criticism over Arsenal leadership ‘hard to take’Josh Kroenke admits criticism over Arsenal leadership ‘hard to take’

Footballers pay respects at Justin Edinburgh memorial serviceFootballers pay respects at Justin Edinburgh memorial service

Manchester City belatedly start pre-season tour in ShanghaiManchester City belatedly start pre-season tour in Shanghai

Ravel Morrison returns to Premier League with one-year deal at Sheffield UnitedRavel Morrison returns to Premier League with one-year deal at Sheffield United

More in this Section

Eintracht Frankfurt striker Sebastien Haller set to undergo West Ham medicalEintracht Frankfurt striker Sebastien Haller set to undergo West Ham medical

Leinster announce first-ever double-header between men's and women's teamsLeinster announce first-ever double-header between men's and women's teams

Kompany set team-mates Champions League goal in his Man City farewellKompany set team-mates Champions League goal in his Man City farewell

Ben Dawson preparing Newcastle players for arrival of new boss in ChinaBen Dawson preparing Newcastle players for arrival of new boss in China


Lifestyle

It's hard to build a reputation in gaming, but it can be even harder to keep one.Game Tech: Dragon Quest Builders sequel builds on first outing

Tea dunking is not just for cosy winter evenings. Biscuits are handy in the summer months for picnics or to keep you going on long hikes.Michelle Darmody's tricks for perfect home made biscuits

Apply sunscreen throughout the day, says Helen O’CallaghanBurning issue: Children's skin needs added protection from the sun

Skincare guru Dr Raj Arora explains how this cleansing technique can make a big difference.Why you should follow the 60 second rule when washing your face, according to an expert

More From The Irish Examiner