I’m not exactly sure what Manchester City’s manager Roberto Mancini is getting paid to do, but apparently signing new players isn’t it. Mancini admitted that player transfers are out of his hands as somebody else looks after them. This somebody is reportedly Brian Marwood, who is listed as the club’s football director.
It’s been reported that some officials of City have blocked attempts at signing Arsenal captain Robin van Persie since they have four strikers already and don’t want to sign anybody else until one of these players is moved out. It’s not that they don’t want last year’s Golden Boot winner, but they have to consider the new UEFA financial fair play rules as well as the 25-man roster.
City has placed themselves in this position by signing anybody with a heartbeat and they’re now stuck with Carlos Tevez, Emmanuel Adebayor, Edin Dzeko, and Sergio Aguero on their books. Mancini, for some reason, isn’t satisfied with this quartet even though millions of pounds were spent on acquiring their services and millions more are laid out for their wages.
Mancini seems to be anxious to add new faces to City’s squad and when he was asked about his plans he simply replied, “For this question, speak to the man in charge. I am not in charge of this. It is important to get players quickly because, after what we did last year, it is important we continue to win. This year will not be easy. It will be harder than last year and for this reason, we need to improve our team. I am not the man in charge of this. We have a man who works for this and we hope that they can do a good job.”
Marwood is having a tough time of it this summer though since he knows City has to unload a player or two before adding anybody else to the squad. He’s having trouble doing it because City is paying their players ridiculous wages and other teams don’t want to take on their current contracts. This is why City offered Adebayor to Tottenham, where he spent last season on loan, for six million pounds and also offered to pay a good chunk of his wages. But being the mercenary he is, Adebayor hasn’t been able to agree to terms with Spurs and City are stuck with him for the time being.
With Arsenal playing City in a pre-season friendly in Beijing on July 27th, the topic of van Persie is definitely going to come up. When asked about the player so far, Mancini hasn’t said much other than that van Persie’s a great striker, but City already has some and they won the league with them last season. He said since he’s under contract with Arsenal he doesn’t really have much to say about him.
It’s believed that City is trying to sell Dzeko to Juventus before they make a move for van Persie. And Juventus plays a big part in this equation since last season’s Serie A winners are or were interested in van Persie first, but are getting tired of waiting for the matter to be resolved. They reportedly put in a low bid of about £8 million for van Persie and have now set their sights on Dzeko.
Also, Manchester United have had a £15 million bid turned down by Arsenal since the club doesn’t really want to sell their captain to one of their main rivals in the EPL, which means they had better hope that Juventus remains interested in van Persie or they could be forced to sell to one of the Manchester clubs. In fact, Arsenal and van Persie may find that all of these teams will simply move on to other options and he’ll remain an Arsenal player until this farce repeats itself in the January transfer window or again next summer.
Teams such as City and United could simply save themselves a lot of money by waiting until van Persie’s contract runs out and sign him for nothing next season. While van Persie could certainly help them this year, it’s not like City or United will be fielding weakened squads without him. If Arsenal wants to cash in on van Persie they should really be doing it this summer before it’s too late.
There are a large number of football supporters who don’t have one iota of sympathy for anybody involved in this circus, meaning van Persie, City, United, Juventus and Arsenal. And the way global football is being run in this money-first era it’s easy to understand why.