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Manchester City
Posted by Wallace Poulter on 01/03/2011

Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini says that Edin Dzeko would be a fabulous signing, insisting "all the good teams in Europe want him", but he admits a deal for the striker has not yet been finalised.

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Multiple reports are suggesting that the Dzeko transfer has stalled, even though City "have agreed" a transfer fee, with the Wolfsburg striker asking for 180,000 a week and City initially offering 125,000. This has subsequently, again according to reports, been raised to 150,000. Are City mad? Give the man the money.

Hang on, I hear you say... and probably other words less printable. That's a ludicrous amount of money. Of course it is.

First, football does not participate in the real world. It is an entertainment in a similar manner that is film, television or music. The sums that professional footballers earn for playing a game is beyond silly. But beyond silly is where we are and given the vast amounts of money in the game, of which fans paying at the turnstiles is just one small part, the players can reasonably expect to have a significant share.

Second, let's look at this in practical terms. The difference between City's reported first offer and the striker's asking price is 55,000 a week. For argument sake and round numbers let's say that there are 20 weeks left in the season. Multiply those together and even my Hartlepool education comes up with 1.1 million.

So if as a club you are willing to pay the 30 million fee for Dzeko's services and then another 125,000 a week why on earth are you haggling over the price of a promising youngster from the 3rd tier of English football?

Yes of course, it's probably a five year contract and a long term commitment etc. etc. But in the grand scheme of things when everything this season is focused on gaining Champions League football is this not a case of penny wise and pound foolish?

Argue that football salaries are nuts and you'll get little dissent from me. Comment that football needs a salary cap of some kind and in principal I agree. But currently this is the way the game is played and if that is the case City should play their hand to the full. Arsenal lost the Premier League title last year because of lack of guts in the January transfer window; now is not the time for City to get cold feet.

Update Reports now filtering that a deal has been struck. Nothing as of yet officially from City.


Posted by nigel on 01/03/2011

Oh come on now you cannot suggest that man city have been cheap in their approach to buying players this season. This is about so much more than 55000 a week. There are principles at stake, city cannot be held to ransom by every transfer target - that would leave them open to total abuse. Also there are the UEFA fair play regulations soon being introduced which play a big part in the clubs approach. After upwards of 750 million pounds has been invested by the owners it is tough to call them tight or lacking in motivation to secure the champions league football they crave. Especially for a player completely untested in the premiership.

Wallace Reply That's my point. City have gone after their targets. To stop now when Champions League qualification is so close seems silly. That's the priority, City have sacrificed potential silverware and spent heavily to get there. Once they have Champions League qualification then they can worry about the UEFA regulations. It all matters for nought if they don't qualify this year.

Posted by SoCal_Gun on 01/03/2011

Man Citeh will pay (and it looks like they already did) for Dzeko and might qualify for the CL this year along with Spuds as Chel$ki and Liverpool are struggling.

BUT constantly changing managers (look @ Chel$ki now) and the UEFA Fair Play rules will make Citeh uncompetitive in the long run

However, if qualifying for the CL Group Stages next yr (which requires a top 3 finish) is the main goal you guys are probably in luck.

Spuds and Chel$ki will probably fight for 4th

Wallace Reply How City and the Italian teams address the UEFA Fair Play rules is certainly an interesting question.

Posted by Sam on 01/03/2011

What do you mean by 'and the Italian teamsĀ“?

Wallace Reply I've read reports that indicate that both Inter and Milan have issues with meeting the UEFA requirements.

Posted by Kevin Francis on 01/03/2011

i think city shouldn't buy dzeko cuz he clearly wants to go 2 juve and i have a feeling he might end up as an adebayor-just in it for money

Wallace Reply I don't feel that way about Adebayor at all. He's a confidence player who clearly loves playing when things are going right for him but gets down easily when he struggles. That's just his personality.

Posted by Chris Restall on 01/04/2011

Hey Wallace,

Missed your blog before the christmas period. Good to see you back for the madness of january. Just wondering who you would sell or loan out from the squad, everyone talks about the big teams needing depth but you almost feel we have too much depth.

I feel we could sell Wright-Phillips, Santa Cruz, Adebayor, and loan out M. Johnson, Jo, Given, and a couple of other younger players without feeling any affect, because most of these players haven't played a minute.

All the talk is about who we're going to buy, but honestly I feel the squad is pretty strong and pretty set for the moment, and it's getting results without playing well which are the signs of a good team. Maybe 1 or 2 additions but more than that will upset the chemistry I think.

Wallace Reply Yes I think SWP and Santa Cruz will be gone. Bridge and Adebayor on loan probably. Lescott will probably stay. Given needs to be playing regularly, but it must be a loan with a call back option.

Posted by Jesse on 01/04/2011

UEFA Fair Play regs are a joke and will never be enforced -- the last thing Platini wants is someone sniffing about Real Madrid's and Barca's books -- and there are some VERY dodgy dealings there involving banks and politicians...

Wallace Reply Will certainly be interesting...

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Wallace Poulter Wallace Poulter is an award winning video game producer, designer, industry consultant and writer. He has been a football fanatic since the day he moved in next door to Brian Clough. "Cloughie" being the acknowledged genius that he was promptly moved out and went to manage Derby. A serviceable senior school left-back in his youth, Poulter played one season of Sunday league football as a striker proving conclusively that he was a serviceable senior school left-back! Today Poulter remains involved with football as a licensed referee and most recently as a consultant on a Football MMO.

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