Manchester City have admitted their surprise upon finding out that there was not a rule passed in 2011 prohibiting clubs from winning consecutive Premier League titles.
“After we won the league in 2012, Sir Alex Ferguson told us that the FA implemented a new rule the summer before that said no club could finish first two years in a row anymore,” said Man City player James Milner. “Something about how they wanted a different team to win every year to bring parity to the league. We immediately thought he was joking, but Financial Fair Play going into effect and we thought it might be a similar kind of thing. So just to be sure we weren’t punished, we tried to finish second that next season.”
This helps explain why City finished 11 points behind Ferguson’s Manchester United in the 2012/13 season and now sit nine points behind first-place Chelsea this season after winning their second title of the Premier League era last year.
“When Jose Mourinho told us the same thing as Ferguson after we won it last season, we became certain this rule was real,” Milner added. “If you can’t believe opposing managers, who can you believe? Your own manager? All of us Man City players doubt that very much.”
City have lost three of their last five Premier League matches, but now that they are no longer under the impression that second place is the best they can hope for, they plan to make a late run at another title.
“Yeah, we’re going to really try now,” said captain Vincent Kompany. “Because we haven’t really been trying this season. I mean, I haven’t really been trying this season. I mean, I’m not really as bad as I have been. I mean, wait, what were we talking about again?”