Manchester City F.C. was founded in 1880 as St. Mark's, having changed their name to Ardwick Association Football Club in 1887 and finally to Manchester City Football Club in 1894. The club currently competes in English football's top tier, the Premier League, and is popularly known as simply City or The Citizens.

The club's most successful era was between the late 1960s and early 1970s, when they won the three national competitions (League, FA Cup, League Cup) and a European Cup Winners' Cup. In the late 1980s the club would enter a period of decline, culminating in a relegation to the third level of English football for the first and only time in their history. Ten years later, the club was bought by the Abu Dhabi United Group for a reported £200 million and has since won two Premier League titles and one of each of the national cups becoming the 6th richest club in the world, generating £346.5 million in 2014.

Man City used to play in the historical Maine Road Stadium, popularly known as ´the Wembley of North', before moving in 2003 to the City of Manchester Stadium, in East Manchester, now renamed to Etihad Stadium by the Abu Dhabi United Group.

Manchester City is the only club to be English champions and be relegated the next year in 1938 and the only club to have scored and conceded more than 100 goals in the same season in 1958.

The club has a fierce rivalry with neighbors Manchester United, known as the Manchester derby and has always managed to maintain one of the largest and most loyal fan bases in England. A Manchester Metropolitan University study found that Manchester City still has more season ticket holders in the city of Manchester, where the club is based, then their bitter rivals Manchester United, based outside of the city, in Trafford, Greater Manchester.

In 2013, the Abu Dhabi United Group created the City Football Group that co-developed and co-owns several football clubs in Japan, Australia and the United States. This means that as of 2013, Man City has established resource and marketing-sharing partnerships with football clubs New York City F.C., Melbourne City F.C. and Yokohama F. Marinos.