The FA Cup is a stranger beast than normal this year - in most cases, a semi-final line up where only one of the five is counted among the traditional big boys, and a quarter-final where both Arsenal and Chelsea were comprehensively beaten, would make for a major shock that would be talked about for days.
It makes sense to reduce the Prem down to 18, or even 16 teams. It would mean the TV and prize money can be shared between fewer candidates and therefore mean more dosh in the pockets - if that doesn't swing the chief executives I don't know what will.
At a time in English football where the fixture list is growing ever more crowded, there is less and less of an excuse for the League Cup's continued existence as an institution. The abolition of FA Cup replays might knock a single game off a team's fixture list in a given season, but getting rid of the League Cup gives a guaranteed break to every single club, and would knock multiple games off the schedule for most big clubs.
City have huge potential, there can be no doubt about that, but Guardiola is not walking into a club that is already set up to dominate. Quite simply, he has an awful lot of work to do to reach the level at which expectations have been set.
With plans possibly afoot to kill off FA Cup replays and play games midweek in order to increase English chances in Europe and in international tournaments, we should enjoy the cup in its current form. Although looking ahead, I'm not seeing too many possible shocks.
It's difficult not to feel sorry for Pellegrini. The Chilean has always conducted himself with the utmost professionalism and courtesy, overseeing some of the most thrilling football the Premier League has ever seen. Yet, he's always been pacing the managerial corridor of uncertainty, his future dictated by the deeds of another coach...
Is there something weird in the sports drinks that they're giving the big teams this season, or something? It's like they're all being fed Michael Jor...
The time has now come for him to re-introduce himself to some former team mates. The cauldron that awaits him at Anfield will have to wait for a good few months yet, but City's number seven will be one of the chief players looking to put Liverpool to the sword when they visit the Etihad Stadium on Saturday evening.
As has so often been proven, making pre-season predictions about league football is the most certain way for a journalist, blogger or pundit to make an absolute fool of themselves. Placing your words and reputation on the line before a ball has been kicked is, in 90% of cases, a true recipe for disaster.
Smalling has historically struggled on some big occasions, but at 25, it finally looks as though he has developed a leadership mentality for Van Gaal. Unlike this time a year ago, he can be entrusted with the responsibility of stopping United's bitter rivals and in a game that could wrestle the momentum away from the Blue half of Manchester...
With every passing season, it seems like peaks and troughs in form are played for more and more importance. A run of wins means that a team is on a charge to the title, but a single draw means that the run has ended, they've been found out, they'll be lucky to finish in the top four... You know the deal.
The 29-year-old can't follow on those lines, and inevitably it's going to have to go one of three ways for the Spaniard in sky blue; either he drastically improves, he remains content with a place on the bench when better players are fit, or he departs. Whether Pellegrini is vigilant enough to send him on his way remains to be seen, but perhaps that job will fall to the man that inevitably succeeds him.
If City were beating chump teams, the way that Liverpool fans held up 1-0 wins over Stoke and Bournemouth as proof that they were flying, then City flying out of the blocks could be dismissed as nothing. An illusion of the fixture list. But they aren't.
It wouldn't take much for Chelsea to be firm favourites, perhaps just one marquee signing to boost their strongest team and keep every player on their toes. But without it, Chelsea will struggle. You'd be foolish to think any different.
Remember when a £20million transfer was a headline-making deal, rather than the norm? Unless you're a pretty young teenager, you probably do, which speaks to how quickly the transfer market has twisted and evolved in the last decade or so...
Going from "I'm not leaving, I'm staying at the football club" to "leaving Aston Villa football club is the hardest decision I have ever had to make" in less than a week is some retraction and without needing too much insight, it's one you would assume was prompted by the imminent departure of Christian Benteke to Liverpool.