The 2000–01 season was Manchester City Football Club's 109th season playing in a division of English football, most of which have been spent in the top flight. The club spent this season playing in the Premier League after winning promotion from the First Division in the previous season. This was the club's fifth season playing in the Premier League since its initial formation as the top tier of English football eight years earlier, with Manchester City as one of its original 22 founding member clubs.
Manchester City's return to the Premiership after a four-year exile was the result of back-to-back promotions from the Second Division. But perhaps the team's two-tier climb back to the top flight again had been a little too rapid because it became apparent after just a few games into the new season that Joe Royle's men would be struggling to hang on to their newly acquired top flight status. After their first ten games though, they were enjoying reasonably stable mid-table form with four wins and defeats each; however, after a 5-0 humbling at Arsenal, it all went wrong and only four wins were achieved during the remainder of the season.
The team's relegation was confirmed by a defeat in the penultimate game of the season, and manager Royle, who had been the guiding hand that had brought the team so quickly back to the Premiership from the Second Division, was dismissed within days. Former England coach Kevin Keegan was appointed to replace Royle on a three-year contract and fans were given renewed hope of an immediate return to the elite.
Prior to this season, the history of Manchester City's performance in the English football league hierarchy since the creation of the Premier League in 1992 is summarised by the following timeline chart – which commences with the last season (1991–92) of the old Football League First Division (from which the Premier League was formed).
Source: Premier League
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored 1Since Liverpool qualified for the Champions League, their place in the UEFA Cup as FA Cup winners went to Ipswich Town, and as Liverpool also won the League Cup that place went to Chelsea. (C) = Champion; (R) = Relegated; (P) = Promoted; (E) = Eliminated; (O) = Play-off winner; (A) = Advances to a further round.
Only applicable when the season is not finished: (Q) = Qualified to the phase of tournament indicated; (TQ) = Qualified to tournament, but not yet to the particular phase indicated; (RQ) = Qualified to the relegation tournament indicated; (DQ) = Disqualified from tournament.