Manchester City Transfer Rumors: 7 Players Citizens Must Go All out to Get
Manchester City are only a few weeks removed from the ecstasy of winning the Barclays Premier League, but everyone knows that Sheikh Mansour will continue to invest in his team.
With nearly limitless resources at their disposal, City can not only go about plugging the few holes they have in their extremely deep squad; they can reinforce already strong positions with world-class players.
With Euro 2012 getting underway, the market for the best talent around is likely to heat up very quickly, and the Citizens will be able to make the first move for any players that might be available.
Here are seven that Mansour and his men would be wise to not let slip.
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Ever needy in midfield, the Daily Mail's link between Athletic Bilbao's Javi Martinez and Manchester City is not an unreasonable one.
When Yaya Toure has been absent for City, they have struggled mightily to create anything going forward, despite all the flashy talent they have. This is because Toure is the only deep-lying playmaker in the team, a role that is becoming extremely important in today's game.
Nigel de Jong is merely an enforcer, and Gareth Barry offers nothing spectacular at the back of the midfield other than stereotypical English grit. Martinez, however, would give City both toughness and that invaluable Xabi Alonso-esque ability to build from the back.
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Ramirez's agent has used that typical sort of obscure, smokescreen language that often floats around when a player is secretly seeking a transfer. He has spoken openly of offers from other clubs, and casually mentioned that "Bologna would do well from his sale."
It's not that Roberto Mancini actually needs more talent on the wings, but it never hurts to have a rising star like Ramirez in your ranks when you have the resources to pull off a deal.
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With the continued rise of Karim Benzema, it would appear that Gonzalo Higuain's time at the Santiago Bernabeu is beginning to draw to a close.
Manchester City would do well to take this opportunity and sign a really fantastic player in Higuain. He does not have much of an ego (unlike other City strikers) and could reinforce the Sky Blues' front line.
When you look at City's core of strikers, everyone but Sergio Aguero has a significant problem. Carlos Tevez is moodier than a pregnant woman, Edin Dzeko is unhappy that he never plays and Mario Balotelli is insane.
Gonzalo Higuain would be a great tonic to these irritating problems.
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Sneijder's stock is lower now than it has been in some time, but that is really no great fault of his own.
At Inter, he is kept shackled deep in midfield instead of in the creative attacking role that suits him best, and that he regularly plays with the Dutch national team.
If Roberto Mancini could figure out a way to fit Sneijder alongside the silky brilliance of David Silva, City would become a far more formidable attacking force—if that is even possible—with one able to cover another's drop in form or bout of fatigue.
Having said that, he had better make his move soon, because a player of Sneijder's caliber will not be on the market for long.
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If any team ever has the opportunity to make a deal for a player as unique as Gareth Bale, it should not hesitate at the opportunity to do so.
According to CaughtOffside, City might have the opportunity to do just that through a player-plus-cash arrangement with Tottenham.
As if there wasn't enough dynamism and flashy play in the Citizens' attack, Bale would add to it significantly. He is not just a speedster, although his sprint speed is almost unparalleled in the Premier League.
His left foot has genuine class, and any team—regardless of style—would do well to have the best crosser of the ball in England peppering the opposition's box all game.
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After another fantastic season with Napoli as part of the sumptuous attacking triumvirate that includes Marek Hamsik and Ezequiel Lavezzi, it would not be surprising if Cavani—the best of the three—moves on to one of his many suitors this summer.
It is not exactly clear how Mancini would balance the forward with his other striking options, but as aforementioned, there are problems with nearly all of them. At least one of those players will have to leave in the coming months.
Therefore, what better replacement could there be than a nearly complete striker such as Cavani? Manchester City got a close and personal view of the forward in last season's Champions League, when the Uruguayan helped bounce them out of the competition in the group stage.
Robin van Persie
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There is hope for desperate Arsenal fans yet. According to chief executive Ivan Gazidis, contract talks have gone fairly well with Robin van Persie and the Gunners are ready to restructure their wage bill to accommodate star players.
Either way, it will be a tough sell to a player in the last years of his prime. Van Persie is eager to finally collect a winner's medal. Convincing him that Arsenal is a better club for him than the reigning Premier League champions will not be easy.
With club after club pulling out of transfer speculation, Manchester City remain one of the few real suitors left for Van Persie's signature. There is palpable enmity between City and Arsenal due to how many former Gunners the Citizens have poached in the last few years. However, ultimately, money talks.
If they want to, City can talk the loudest.