Since being taken over by Sheikh Mansour in 2008 Manchester City have gone from strength to strength both on and off the pitch. The blue side of Manchester were used to anything from European nights to the third division of English football, arguably the darkest period of the club’s history. Fast forward to this week and the Citizens have just won the domestic treble, winning every competition available in English football, the first time it has ever been achieved in the men’s game. Under Guardiola, City have found another level and their brand of scintillating football along with guaranteed success have made them a driving force in global football.
There is one man who has been at the club before the investment came in and has witnessed every change that has led the club to being where it is today. Mr captain fantastic himself Vincent Kompany has embellished exactly what the club is about and although he has been one of the best defenders the Premier League has seen, his professionalism and leadership has taken his legacy to new heights. The day after City’s emphatic 6-0 FA Cup final win the Belgian defender announced he was leaving the club, after 11 seasons at The Etihad, to take over as player-manager at his boyhood club Anderlecht in Belgium.
As a player, Kompany has won a vast amount of trophies both with City and on a personal level as well. At the club, he has won 4 Premier League titles, 2 FA Cups, 4 League Cups and 2 Community shields. With the 2011 FA Cup win, the club ended a 35-year wait for a major trophy and the following year they ended a 44-year wait for a league title after Sergio Aguero’s goal against QPR in the 93rd minute sealed it in dramatic fashion, to say the least. All of this under the leadership of the Belgian who cost a cool six million.
The defender who performed on the big stages
Vincent Kompany will be remembered in Manchester as a fantastic defender who held the club at his heart but also for scoring some crucial goals during his time at the club.
2012: VS Manchester United
Manchester City were on the brink of the impossible after clawing the gap to bitter rivals United and they needed to win to put the title in their hands. Up stepped Mr Manchester himself as Kompany rose the highest from a corner to thunder a header past De Gea and send the Etihad into meltdown. You could tell he enjoyed that one as well.
2018: VS Arsenal at Wembley
Pep Guardiola hadn’t won a trophy with City before this day as he has endured a tough first season in Manchester. In the Carabao cup final City had a chance to put this right. After opening the scoring Arsenal were threatening an equaliser until Kompany prodded home and celebrated like an absolute mad man.
2019: VS Leicester
Probably the moment he decided to leave Man City and go out on a high! City had been involved in arguably the greatest title race in Premier League history and anything but a win would hand the title to Liverpool. After coming up against a stubborn and well drilled Leicester side again arise Sir Kompany. In the 70th minute, Kompany tried one from 30 yards out and only went and hit the shot of his life. The ball flew into the top right corner and couldn’t get any more top bins. Kompany managed to send the Etihad into pandemonium for one last time in his final competitive appearance at the ground.
The Belgian has endured many low moments during his career including a horrific injury record that severely limited his playing time over the last three years. And to his credit not once did he complain or throw in the towel, he just remained positive and helped the team as much as he could.
The word legend gets thrown about so much these days, But in this situation, there couldn’t be a man more deserving of the title. A once in a lifetime player for City and certainly one that will be very hard to replace. Time will tell whether Kompany will become a great manager but if his career has been anything to go by we wouldn’t bet against him.