Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Striker talk

One injured, one maybe on the move and one possibly coming in? Most talk has been about ‘up front’ in recent days.

Hot topic

As temperatures once again sore in Manchester, the hot topic seems to surround issues in the striking department. Sadly, one of the subject matters is an injury to Alvaro Negredo - last time it was a lengthy shoulder injury (followed by a huge dip in form) and this time it’s his ‘Beckham bone’; having fractured his 5th metatarsal. This, apparently, will keep him out for about 2 ½ months. By my calculations that would see him return around about Hull City away / Aston Villa away.

So, then, it would seem slightly bewildering to read more persistent rumours about John Guidetti perhaps (still) moving out. On loan, fair enough; and it will please City fans to see that the more recent, stronger rumours linking the unlucky Swede with a Premier League stay at Southampton.

So, with one out of action and one possibly moving out, I suppose it wasn’t going to be long, nor a surprise, to see strikers being linked with a move to the Etihad. What WAS surprising though was the player being touted around. 36-year old, ex-Chelsea (and half-a-dozen others), Ivorian striker Didier Drogba.

According to The Star (I know (groan)), “Pellegrini believes” Drogba to be an option for him…so, presumably, some journalist actually did some serious work and has spoken to him or someone else from M.C.F.C. to find this information out. Yeah right…

But let us just entertain, for a second, this possibility…and, firstly, let’s just look at it from a John Guidetti point of view.

You see your colleague get an injury that sees him out for a 5th of a year. Initially saddened by the news for your workmate; I’m sure, in this business, you then secretly rub your hands and think, ‘Right, this is my chance’.

Next minute your being asked about the possibility of moving 225 miles away while a player 14 years your senior might be stepping in to lend a hand instead of you. Not a nice feeling I bet.

As for Didier himself, I think it would be a great move for us. Not a move I would EVER have expected…but a good one nonetheless.

Basically, he bangs goals in wherever he plays and at whatever level he plays at. Absolutely clinical in front of goal and experienced in all competitions; the player fresh from a season at Galatasaray would also be, I’m sure, a calming influence on Yaya Toure.

Upsetting John aside it certainly makes sense to me for several reasons. But, as always, time will tell about whether this is just another lazy piece of journalism (putting 2+2 together) or whether someone out there has actually done some serious sleuthing for once.

And in the middle…

James Milner is being linked further with a move away from City; this time Liverpool are apparently glancing not only at Micah but may be adding the determined, Yorkshire battler to their ‘wish list’ too.

And with further links to both Angel Di Maria and, once again, Isco - following a Real Madrid ‘clearing of the decks’ ready for them to bring in James Rodriguez - OUR James might just now be looking at his situation even closer and may well now push for a short move up the M62.

He might want to ‘hang fire’ a moment though; the midfield department might just become a little more roomy.

With the injured Negredo now going nowhere it’s being suggested that Javi Garcia tops the list of outgoing foreigners and with Jack Rodwell still, surely, set to depart also; even WITH the recent introduction of Fernando there will be slightly more elbow room for Milner.

I for one hope he stays…but equally I’d love to see us bring in Di Maria or Isco in support of Drogba.

I’ve been saying it for a while now; don’t be surprised to see City pull some kind of attacking / creative midfield option out of the bag before the end of August.

Next up?

AC Milan on Sunday in the Guinness International Champions Cup in the US (KO 4:00pm BST, 11:00am EDT) where more of the World-Cup-latter-stage, City players will join the squad.
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Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday (2:00am BST) Tuesday (8:00pm CDT) before the AC Milan game.

Pablo Zabaleta, however we are told, will be given a much deserved, extended break following his World Cup final appearance (and very lengthy domestic campaign); being allowed to return to training just a week before the start of the season! Over to Bacary

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