Pep Guardiola’s men followed up last season’s record breaking 100 points tally with another 98 this campaign and that is unprecedented excellence.
City have not dropped a single point since January 29 when they surprisingly lost 2-1 at Newcastle – that’s 14 wins on the spin which is more magnificent than Tormund Giantsbane’s beard.
Liverpool fans will be waking up feeling like there’s no coffee in the house – depresso – but they should still be proud of their team. The Reds deserve credit for pushing the best side of all time all the way to the final day – their tally of 97 points would have been good enough to win the title in every Premier League season apart from the last two this great Guardiola side have lifted.
It’s insane that a team that included the PFA player of the year in Virgil van Dijk, the Golden Glove winner Alisson (21 clean sheets) and two Golden Boot winners (Mo Salah and Sadio Mane) ended up losing out by a point but that further shows just how special this City team are.
If this Reds side had played in past seasons then United would not have their beloved Treble winners of 1999 who ‘only’ got 79 points, Arsenal’s famous Invincibles (90pts) would also have been vanquished and Chelsea’s 50-year wait for the title would not have been halted in 2005 when John Terry & Co blitzed their way to 95 points.
Raheem Sterling, who aimed a cheap dig at the former club who had set him on the road to superstardom when he collected a gong, may be as welcome in Liverpool as Danny Baker is at Buckingham Palace. But most Koppites will acknowledge they were pipped by a team so good they cannot be ignored.
Skipper Vincent Kompany stood up when his team needed him the most in the final week – the Belgian is a God among men. Sergio Aguero joins him as a club legend – the likes of which only come around a few times in a generation. Fernandinho, Sterling and Bernardo Silva were also breath-taking and brilliant.
Rivals will mock Jurgen Klopp for being close but no cigar but that is churlish in the extreme. They will try to justify their comments but it’s just an attempt to muddy the water to make them seem deep.
Life is hard – it’s harder if you’re stupid. And you’re stupid if you utter or even think of the word ‘bottlers’ as both these sides have shown phenomenal standards of play. It’s the first time two clubs have finished with 90-plus points and the Reds have a huge 22 points more than they did last season – that’s progress in anyone’s terms.
So yes in the basest terms Liverpool are losers – but the greatest losers of all time – and their fans should take that in the proudest ‘you can’t take that away from them’ sense not the mocking way rivals will shape it.
And Jurgen Klopp & Co still have a full English to look forward to in a mouth-watering Champions League final between them and Tottenham on June 1 so it’s onwards to Madrid . . .
ONE THING that would have cheered Liverpool fans up is seeing Manchester United lose 2-0 against already-relegated Cardiff.
It meant Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team ended the season with the fewest home clean sheets – just two – one less than Fulham, Huddersfield and Southampton. That is embarrassing for a club that has spent in the region of £850million on players since they last lifted the title.
Paul Pogba was verbally abused by the Old Trafford faithful at the end and if he had not already made his mind to jump this sinking ship beforehand he certainly will now. The Frenchman had another woeful game, allowing Nathaniel Mendez-Laing to run past him unopposed to tuck home his second of the day.
It is unusual to see United fans turn on their stars so viscerally but the club is now a bigger mess than Brexit. Solskjaer has insisted it will get better, but promises are like babies – easy to make but hard to deliver.
AND finally we come to the stand-out performers – for good and for bad – from a crazy season where Manchester City and Liverpool have redefined footballing brilliance to Huddersfield who were dreadful and a Manchester United side that proved money doesn’t always buy success.
BOSS TEAM OF THE SEASON: Alisson; Trent Alexander-Arnold, Virgil van Dijk (c), Jan Vertonghen, Andy Robertson; Fernandinho, Eden Hazard, Bernardo Silva; Sadio Mane, Sergio Aguero, Raheem Sterling.
Special mention: Ederson; Aaron Wan-Bissaka; Vincent Kompany, Lucas Digne; Willy Boly, Heung-min Son, Ikay Gundogan, Leroy Sane; Joao Moutinho; Roberto Pereyra; Ruben Neves, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Harry Kane, Mo Salah.
DROSS TEAM OF THE SEASON: Joe Hart; Stephan Lichtsteiner; Eliaquim Mangala; Phil Jones; Eric Bailly; Paul Pogba, Fred; Alexis Sanchez (c), Henrikh Mkhitaryan; Vincent Janssen; Alvaro Morata.
Sub-standard: Jordan Pickford; Gaetan Bong; Javier Manquillo; Marcos Rojo; Eric Bailly, Kieran Trippier, Mateo Kovacic, Adrien Silva, Gary Madine, Alexander Sorloth, Oumar Niasse.