Manchester City are out of the FA Cup. That ends their bid to make the best kind of history there is, the kind that instils immortality on a club, the kind that echoes down through the ages and makes all connected with it into legends.
World football has seen some incredible teams come and go over its history, but only a handful has ever done the grand slam. It is a remarkable achievement, and almost impossible to do.
In Europe, we are one of only two clubs to manage it in a professional league and one of only three clubs in world football who has done it whilst winning the top continental honour.
The one club in Europe who has managed it were Bayern Munich in season 2012-13, when they won the Champions League having already won all three of German football’s top honours.
That’s one less trophy than we won in 1967, but the accomplishment is remarkable for all that.
Including a continental trophy, only one other club – Al Ahly of Egypt – has ever won five titles in one campaign. This really is a record which can only be matched, never beaten.
City’s quadruple bid ends their hopes of getting their own grand slam.
Other clubs have actually had their hands around it and fallen at the final hurdle.
In 2015-16, Barcelona won four out of five trophies they were competing for; the one they missed was the Champions League.
Real Madrid did brilliantly in their own historic quest to win the grand slam; in 2016-17 and in 2017-18 they too missed out on one of the trophies required for it … too bad so sad.
In England, Manchester City almost did it in 2018-19 … they missed out on the European trophy, although they won all four domestic honours, including the Charity Shield, which they weren’t eligible to win in this particular campaign. It’s an incredible achievement in itself, but sadly not enough to grasp the brass ring from Celtic.
Every year, some new club looks as if they might find a way to do this and every year they invariably fall by the wayside at some point.
I guess that’s why it’s only ever been done a handful of times.
The richest club, throwing everything they have at this, has come up short again, and as I suspect they will finish the season with three out of four it’s going to be sore for them to take.
But they will be back at it, as will some of the other super clubs.
The question is; will one of them ever get there?
I wish them luck at it.