Playing with other people’s money
Some Random Website says that Man City will spend up to £150m this summer to transfer their squad, so it must be true. But even if the number was made up for a few extra hits (heresy, I know), there can be little doubt that Man City and Mancini will spend whatever they want. The limitations will have more to do with who would say yes than whatever their price tag would be.
I get it; Craig Bellamy was brutal down the stretch this year. But adding another target man up front doesn’t seem like the solution to their woes. Playing a front line of Tevez, Adebayor, and World Class Striker X seems like overkill on the finishing front while lacking playmaking, crossing and creativity. Wasn’t that the problem this year? Even when Mancini ran out an attacking lineup, they would sometimes struggle to score because, frankly, the link-ups moving the ball from back to front seemed totally absent at times.
Shouldn’t City be pursuing a great winger on the right to mimic the rampaging runs and calm in-the-box creativity of LW Adam Johnson? Shouldn’t they be looking for the next Fabregas or Xavi to pull the strings from midfield? Why does everyone (including them, apparently) just assume they should buy all the strikers in the world?
Adam Johnson was a fantastic signing for them — he’s young, pacey, creative, and already worth at least £10m more than they paid. City ought to grab a few more players like him and then let them grow together with their already world-class pairing of Tevez and Adebayor up front.
If City went after Javi Martinez from Athletic Bilbao for midfield playmaking, Rodrigo Palacio from Genoa to run down the right and create chances, and maybe a great LB to replace overrated Wayne Bridge — Capdevila, maybe? — then they could field an 11 of:
Defense: Zabeleta Kompany Toure Capdevila
Midfield: Palacio Martinez Barry Johnson
Strikers: Adebayor Tevez
Bench: Lescott, de Jong, Wright-Phillips, Bellamy, Santa Cruz, Bridge, Vieira, etc.
Looks like a title winner to me — and probably at the cost of just one elite striker to boot.