They certainly haven't lost the fight they showed in the first three months of the campaign, except for two of what can only be described as humiliating results against West Brom in the FA Cup and Crystal Palace. So, what's gone wrong?
The end is nigh for Manuel Pellegrini. But for the current Manchester City boss, if the men above are to pull the proverbial trigger on his Etihad reign this summer, he'll have only himself to blame.
The players are exhibiting a freedom and style to their play which had been alarmingly truant during the ill-fated spell of Gerardo Martino. Much to City's angst and trepidation, Barcelona have rediscovered that way of winning which makes racking off five or six goals on an afternoon's work curiously insouciant.
Manchester United have been far easier on the eyes this season, but they currently sit on 37 points after 21 games, exactly the same as this time last season when David Moyes was in charge. Just let that sink in for a moment.
Barca are the bookies' favourites for the tie by some margin, but they may have it wrong. City have had their slump, this is the resurgence. Is it time for them to finally explode onto the European stage? Don't bet against it.
This season Roberto Martinez's team have found it hard to replicate the kind of form that took them to the brink of breaking into the notoriously exclusive top four for just the second time. Despite an indifferent start, however, the Toffees have improved of late and the tightness of the league table so far means that a similar challenge could be on the cards in 2014/15.
It is fair to say with Xavi's decline Modric is now ahead of him in the pecking order, and he, Kroos, Cesc Fàbregas and Andrea Pirlo are now arguably the best technical central midfielders on the planet at present, and some might even say that Modric is, or could soon be, leading the pack.
Liverpool haven't been handed the easiest return with a group featuring last season's champions Real Madrid, Swiss Super League winners FC Basel and new boys Ludogorets. It's a group they can realistically get out of though and will hope the fear factor of their historic European standing will unnerve the latter of those two, especially for home matches.
The first international break of the season is always the hardest to take - we've just had our first taster of club football only to be faced with a 2 week break. There was however some exquisite talent on show and some highly entertaining games. This week I take a look at which of this years Champions League stars were at centre stage during the international games...
On Monday night the transfer window battened down its hatches once again. Summer is over and it's time for football transfers to go in to hibernation until New Years Day 2015. Some Champions League clubs will be delighted with their summer dealings - others... not so much.
It's back - the greatest club competition on the planet and the 2014/15 season promises to be one of the most exciting yet... the draw for the group stages has just taken place and the excitement surrounding how the English clubs will fare this season is paramount. Let's take a look at who they'll be up against...
Naismith is Everton's highest rated player having scored in each of their opening league games against Leicester and Arsenal... His performance in Everton's 3-1 win over Fulham was lauded as one of the best substitute appearances in the league last season... Do you consider Steven Naismith to be Everton's unsung hero?
Louis van Gaal's first foray into competitive Premier League football ended in disappointing fashion on Saturday afternoon as he watched his team slide to a 2-1 defeat to Swansea City... However, despite the initial sadness in defeat, Saturday's disappointment could be the best result for Louis van Gaal and Manchester United.
Every player in the Premier League is under pressure to be at their best all the time, but each club always has those one or two players whom the fans expect that little bit extra from... this season's Premier League has a few players who will need to be firing on all cylinders from the off to win over the fans and help their team succeed.
Spurs may not be throwing the money around like they did last summer, but they are solidifying key areas, while trimming the fat off a squad that needed to be cut down... The north London side have spent wisely so far as the new boss strives to improve them defensively and the players brought in seem to adequately match the needs of the Argentine.
When Mourinho returned to Stamford Bridge last summer, there were musings that things might be different this time around. A few months into his second stint he hinted at wanting to build a dynasty as part of a long term project. But it seems that plan soon fell by the wayside as he reverted to putting his faith in established stars rather than promising youth.