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Analysing Fernandinho's First Month at Manchester City

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 28:  Fernandinho of Manchester City controls the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between Aston Villa and Manchester City at Villa Park on September 28, 2013 in Birmingham, England.  (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)
Jan Kruger/Getty Images
Tim OscroftContributor IOctober 10, 2013

Fernandinho joined Manchester City from Shakhtar Donetsk early last summer in one of the most widely telegraphed moves of the year, but the Brazilian has not had the impact that may have been expected for such a large transfer fee.

Eye-watering amounts like the £30m mentioned per Sky's report of his signing were bandied about, making him the Blues' second most expensive arrival, in terms of a fee, after Sergio Aguero.

Jamie Redknapp told Daily Mail readers City's new boy was "...a sensational capture for Manchester City. He could be the best midfielder in the Barclays Premier League next season," on 6 June, but so far he's come up short on that prediction.

City's comfortable 4-0 win over Newcastle was a walk in the park, but on a tougher-than-expected trip to Cardiff for the next fixture, Fernandinho did not have the kind of impact a big-money signing should have had.  

Fernandinho during the Hull game, when he was booked and looked uncomfortable at times
Fernandinho during the Hull game, when he was booked and looked uncomfortable at timesChris Brunskill/Getty Images

Manuel Pellegrini hauled the midfielder off after 77 minutes with the score at 1-1, so he can't be blamed for the two goals that took the game away from City, but it was hard to imagine Nigel De Jong being replaced in such circumstances.

Against Hull the following week Fernandinho looked completely out of sorts, as did the team overall, in the early stages and was booked after 23 minutes, per Phil Keidel's view on Bleacher Report. City recovered to win 2-0 but having a combative midfield player on a yellow card for two-thirds of the match was not ideal.

Rested for the goalless draw at Stoke, the 28-year-old returned for the Champions League meeting with Viktoria Plzen. He looked much more at home in the type of game he had much experience of at Shakhtar, and kicked on from there to play his part in City's breathtaking 4-1 derby victory.

The Brazilian looked more at home against Viktoria Plzen. Maybe it was City's natty new away kit?
The Brazilian looked more at home against Viktoria Plzen. Maybe it was City's natty new away kit?Lennart Preiss/Getty Images

45 minutes in the 5-0 win over a disinterested Wigan in the Capital One Cup were followed by a 90 to forget as City were undone by Aston Villa.

Worse followed when Fernandinho was culpable for Bayern Munich's third goal in their 3-1 demolition at Etihad Stadium. Trying to weave his way through the middle, rather than keeping it simple, didn't work and was a very visible error on a night when City looked out of their depth.

Along with the rest of the Blues, the Brazilian international bounced back well in the win over Everton, and the post-international break period will be a good time for him to assert himself. 

It's been far from a disaster, but City have set the bar very high in their quest for glory—Roberto Mancini will tell you that—so Fernandinho will need to start showing more of why so much money was spent on him.

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