A lot can change in football in a short space of time, especially over the space of three years.
Players make their way through the youth teams and there are summer and winter additions that cause changes in the squad year-on-year.
So, it is difficult to make predictions about what will happen in the next few months, let alone the next few years – but we’re still going to give it a go.
So what could Man City’s starting lineup look like at the start of the 2023/24 campaign, taking into account summer arrivals and young players making their mark?
Take a look at a position-by-position guide here.
Ederson has been with City since 2017 and has been one of the club’s most consistent performers, impressing with his feet as well as his hands. In 2023, the Brazilian will be 29, which is still a relatively young age for a goalkeeper.
City are likely to be on the lookout for another right-back in the next few transfer windows, with Joao Cancelo failing to adapt to the Premier League since his move from Juventus. That leaves Kyle Walker as the only recognised right-back at the club. The England man will be 33 in 2023.
One name City have been heavily linked with is Nelson Semedo with reports suggesting that Cancelo could be part of the deal that will see the full-back arrive at the Etihad Stadium from Barcelona. Should a deal go through the 26-year-old is likely to replace Walker in the right-back role in the coming years.
One academy product who could make the step up to add numbers to the Man City defence is Taylor Harwood-Bellis. The 18-year-old has already made his first-team debut, coming on for the final eight minutes of the Champions League Group C game against Dinamo Zagreb. In 2023, the defender will be 21-years-old and ready to cement his place in the starting lineup.
Harwood-Bellis would be likely to line up alongside Aymeric Laporte, with the Frenchman establishing himself as Pep Guardiola’s first-choice defender when fit. A knee injury has disrupted his season, but aged 29 in 2023 he will act as the experienced head in the middle of defence.
Completing the defence could be Benjamin Mendy. The left-back has seen his City career plagued with injuries, but should he be able to get over his injury problems – and erratic recent form – then he will be able to stake his place as first-choice left-back for the next few years. He will be 28 in 2023.
Rodri arrived at City in the summer and has quickly established himself as a key part of Pep Guardiola’s team this season making 39 appearances in all competitions, sitting just in front of the back four. Aged just 23-years-old now, the midfielder will be at his peak by time 2023 comes around.
Phil Foden has broken into the first-team over the last couple of seasons, despite the amount of talent in the squad. The midfielder’s impressive performances mean that he is highly rated both at the Etihad and by people looking in. The 20-year-old looks set to be a regular for Man City in the future.
Making up the midfield three could be Kevin De Bruyne, despite him being aged 32 by the time 2023 comes around, his talent and ability to pass the ball makes him a mainstay for City for the next few years. The Belgian will also bring a wealth of experience to the midfield.
Raheem Sterling has been one of the most impressive performers for City since moving from Liverpool in 2015. The winger has 19 goals in all competitions so far this season. He will still only be 29 in 2023 and is likely to continue to be one of City’s most important players.
On the other side could be Bernardo Silva, who has also proved to be a key player for Guardiola in recent seasons. Like Sterling, the right-winger will be 29 in three-years time meaning that he will still have plenty left in the tank.
Bernardo and Sterling will be looking to provide assists for Gabriel Jesus who is likely to take over from Sergio Aguero as the main striker at the Etihad Stadium. The Brazilian has scored a total of 18 goals and provided nine assists this season. In 2023 he will be 26, meaning he should be at his peak.
Aguero, on the other hand, will be 35-years-old in three-years, giving City a decision to make over the striker’s future. He is out of contract in 2021 and is unlikely to be starting in three years time, but still could possibly make the difference from the bench.
Possible 2023/24 lineup: Ederson; Semedo, Harwood-Bellis, Laporte, Mendy; Rodri, Foden, De Bruyne; Sterling, Jesus, Bernardo.