I know it's not like Man City have a rich European history or anything (their one European trophy came at the 1970 Cup Winners' Cup), but I think Mancini and some of their fans might be happy that they didn't finish 3rd and get relegated into the Europa League. I think they would have viewed the competition as a burden rather than an opportunity.
I really hope that Man Utd and Real Madrid draw each in other in the last 16. That would be a fascinating heavyweight contest, plus Ronaldo returning to Old Trafford for the first time would be interesting to see.
With Mourinho pretty much certain to leave RM after the end of this season, I wonder how his legacy there will be viewed if he fails to win either the La Liga title or Champions League. Coaching the biggest club in the world, the best/deepest squad in the world and being given a huge spending budget, but only winning one La Liga title in 3 years in a two horse race, and failing to deliver La Decima in the Champions League in 3 attempts. I don't think that could be considered as hugely successful to be honest.
Which is why they shouldn't be turning up their noses at the Europa League. I mean Chelsea even won a CWC and a Super Cup under Vialli in 98 before they began to compete in the CL. City's only modern Euro campaign pre-ADUG they squeezed past Lokeren and lost to Groclin on away goals. Ergo, zero European pedigree. Even Braga have more.