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The Best Manchester City Right-Backs of All-Time

Manchester City's Best Right-Backs of All-Time
Manchester City's Best Right-Backs of All-Time

In Manchester City's history, right-backs have exemplified excellence, showcased unwavering dedication, and displayed remarkable versatility, shaping the very fabric of the Cityzens.

From the leadership of Tony Book through Bacary Sagna's defensive prowess to Kyle Walker's electrifying pace and defensive nous, each player contributed significantly to the Manchester Club's success over decades.

Let's Explore The 10 Best Right-Backs In Man City History

1. Kyle Walker

Kyle Walker unquestionably ranks as the best right-back in Manchester City's history, showcasing his exceptional skills and contributing significantly to the team's triumphs since joining from Spurs in 2017. His impressive trophy haul includes five Premier League titles, two FA Cups, four EFL Cups, and two FA Community Shields.

Moreover, Walker played a crucial role in Man City's historic treble season, clinching the league, FA Cup and UEFA Champions League triumph, along with victories in the UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup in 2023. With his consistent performances and invaluable contributions, Walker rightfully stands atop the list of Manchester City's best right-back of all-time.

2. Pablo Zabaleta

Pablo Zabaleta, a cornerstone of City's defence from 2008 to 2017, holds a revered position as the second-best right-back in the club's history. With 333 appearances and 12 goals to his name, Zabaleta's impact transcended statistics. Hailing from Buenos Aires, Argentina, Zabaleta's journey to the Etihad saw him reject offers from clubs like Juventus in favour of the Sky Blues. His debut against Chelsea marked the beginning of an illustrious career on English soil, characterised by unwavering dedication and remarkable defensive ability.

Zabaleta was vital in City's success under manager Roberto Mancini and later under Manuel Pellegrini, contributing to their Premier League, FA Cup, Football League Cup, and FA Community Shield victories. Notably, his goal in the historic 3-2 victory over QPR helped secure City's first Premier League title in 2011-12, cementing him as a City legend.

3. Tony Book [Anthony Keith Book]

Tony Book's legacy as one of Man City's greatest right-backs is firmly established through his remarkable contributions from 1966 to 1973. Signed from Plymouth Argyle, Book's leadership guided City to significant successes, including their second league championship in the 1967/68 season.

Affectionately nicknamed "Skip," he overcame setbacks like an achilles injury to lead City to FA Cup glory in 1969 and played a crucial role in the historic 1969/70 season, securing both European and domestic honours. Beyond his playing days, Book's influence extended to coaching and management roles. With 312 appearances and 5 goals, he rightfully earns his place among the elite right-backs in the club's history.

4. Richard Edghill

Richard Edghill emerged as a talented right-back for Man City in the 1990s. He was known for his pace and ability to support the attack from the defensive position. Edghill's journey at City epitomised perseverance amidst adversity. Joining the club's youth scheme in 1988, he debuted in the 1993–94 season. Despite injuries, he played a vital role in City's promotion to the Premier League in 1999–2000, even captaining the team in the absence of Andy Morrison. Edghill's resilience shone as he scored his first professional goal and made significant contributions. However, managerial changes and tactical shifts limited his opportunities, leading to his departure in 2002 after 207 appearances.

5. Joao Cancelo

Regarded as one of the world's premier full-backs, Joao Cancelo made waves in Spain with Valencia and later in Italy with Inter Milan and Juventus before Man City secured his services in 2019. Although he initially faced competition from Kyle Walker for the starting right-back position, Cancelo showcased his versatility by excelling in multiple roles, especially in left-back. His breakout season in 2020/21 saw him play a crucial role in City's Premier League triumph, with his ability to drift into midfield and influence play earning widespread acclaim.

Cancelo earned consecutive selections in the PFA Premier League Team of the Year for the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons. Despite a reported falling out with manager Pep Guardiola over playing time, Cancelo returned to City in the summer of 2023 after a loan spell at Bayern Munich in January 2023. However, his long-term future at the club remains uncertain as he is on loan at Barcelona for the 2023/24 campaign.

6. Bacary Sagna

Bacary Sagna stands as one of Man City's best-ever right-backs, making a key impact during his three-season tenure from 2014 to 2017. The Frenchman's arrival from Arsenal in July 2014 signalled the beginning of an era of defensive solidity and attacking prowess. With 85 appearances across all competitions, including over 50 starts in the Premier League, Sagna showcased his versatility, defensive astuteness, and relentless work ethic.

His contributions were instrumental in City's triumphs, notably their League Cup victory over Liverpool in February 2016, where he played a crucial role in the heart of the defence. Sagna's professionalism and commitment earned him respect from teammates, staff, and fans alike, solidifying his status as a revered figure in City's history of right-backs.

7. Andy Hinchcliffe

Andy Hinchcliffe emerged as one of Manchester City's finest fullbacks during the late 1980s and early 1990s. Blessed with exceptional crossing ability and a keen eye for goal, Hinchcliffe was a potent threat in attack, often initiating dangerous moves down the flank. His defensive contributions were equally impressive, as he displayed sound positioning and tactical awareness to nullify opposing threats. Hinchcliffe's versatility and consistent performances cemented his place amongst the greatest City full-backs of all-time.

8. Glyn Pardoe

Glyn Pardoe was a product of City's youth academy. He crafted his narrative in the club's history with his outstanding performances as a left-back and right-back in the 1960s and 1970s. Known for his tenacity, versatility, and unwavering commitment, Pardoe embodied the spirit of Man City during his playing days. Pardoe's loyalty and dedication endeared him to generations of fans, making him a revered figure in the club's history. Despite setbacks, including a severe leg injury, his passion and gratitude remained unwavering as he made 380 appearances and scored 22 goals for the Cityzens.

9. Paul Power

Paul Power's narrative at City is nothing short of legendary, entrenched in the very fabric of the club. A lifelong devotee of the Sky Blues, his journey from a young fan in Openshaw to a stalwart on the pitch exemplifies a remarkable bond. In his 12-year tenure, performing consistently as a left-back and often as a right-back, Power experienced the full spectrum of emotions, from the elation of leading City out at Wembley as captain to the anguish of relegation.

His contributions spanned pivotal moments, including a crucial goal in the FA Cup semi-final and a resilient display in the League Cup triumph. Power's commitment to the club extended beyond his playing days, with a return as an Academy coach, continuing the family tradition with his son Nick.

10. Micah Richards

Micah Richards was a highly regarded right-back, who rose through the ranks of Manchester City's youth system. He became a key player for the club in the late 2000s and early 2010s, known for his athleticism and attacking contributions. He was part of the side that won the Premier League in the 2011–12 season and the FA Cup in 2011 under Mancini.

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