Sheik Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan must feel like T.I. in his song "Whatever You Like." Personally, I'm all for treating people to nice dinners and presents, but there comes a time when one asks oneself, is it really worth it?
Handing out ridiculous pay packets to players who were never in the running for a position with a top four side or players who never figured as permanent in fixtures for bigger clubs must make him feel a bit like a sugar daddy, even if he is not familiar with the phrase.
Rumour has it that Manchester City released a statement to any dissatisfied top player in the world that went something like, "any time you want to pick up the telephone, you know it ain't nothin' to drop a couple stacks on you."
The first man to heed the call of the Sky Blues was Robinho, mad that Real Madrid wanted the better Ronaldo and that the team refused to pay him enough to his liking.
Manchester City's signing of Robinho was aimed at drawing more big name players to the City of Manchester Stadium and yet only two relatively unknown footballers Nigel de Jong and Vincent Kompany answered the call.
The Citizens, in spite of being the richest club in the world, finished tenth, out of sight and out of mind. Manager Mark Hughes barely held on to his job and was criticized throughout the 08/09 season for losing his changing room.
Along Came Barry
The times began to change for Manchester City when they announced their £12 million capture of Aston Villa Captain Gareth Barry on June 2, 2009.
The move came as a shock to many in the footballing world who thought that after finding himself unable to secure a move to Liverpool in the previous summer window would remain at Villa until another Champions League side came calling.
Barry felt guilty enough about his move to compose a letter to Villa fans in the Birmingham Mail, stating that he felt the need for a new challenge. "I need a new challenge, I have a massive fear of going stale and falling into a comfort zone."
Hey, It's Roque
Following City's suprising move for Gareth Barry, Mark Hughes was keen to add an old friend of his from his time at Blackburn Rovers, Roque Santa Cruz. The tall forward was considered a target of Sir Alex Ferguson's last summer, although those rumours appear to be quite unfounded in light of the lack of evidence as well as United buying Dimitar Berbatov instead.
The Sheik splashed the cash offering Rovers £17.3 million, an offer Rovers should have felt incredibly fortunate to receive. Santa Cruz became a Citizen on June 21, 2009, for all of you keeping a timeline at home.
He's Our Superstar—Tevez
The whole Carlos Tevez Sir Alex Ferguson soap opera was always destined for one season. The pilot episode introduced a recurring motif in the 08/09 campaign for the Champions of England, a growling Carlos Tevez in a United track jacket that must have felt like part of the uniform for him.
Tevez felt like the manager was banishing him to the bench undeservedly and made his feelings known near the end of the season.
While many United fans were singing in the terraces "Sign him up, Fergie," I myself wondered why on earth should any fan want Carlitos to return following the remarks about wanting to play for a major rival of ours next season.
As the relationship began to fray, Tevez pushed himself further away from United and looked set on a move to another top English club or to a team in Italy or Spain.
Instead the player and his representative picked up the telephone and made a local call to Manchester City. The Sheik and Sparky (manager Mark Hughes) told Tevez he could be paid a fair amount more and would feature in more matches for the other team in Manchester. And on July 14, 2009, Tevez officially signed for the Citizens.
Adebayor, Adebayor, Give Him the Ball, And He Will Score
The lastest transfer speculation has Arsenal FC accepting a £25 million bid from Manchester City for the services of their Togolese striker Emmanuel Adebayor. The amount of evidence in connection with this move is staggering and leads one to expect that a transfer is imminent.
As fellow TTHSBL scribe Puneet Singh put it to me earlier, it's almost as if Arsenal are selling fourth place to Manchester City with this sale. I will allow him to shed more light on that in the coming days.
The addition of Adebayor to a strike force that already includes Carlos Tevez, Roque Santa Cruz, Craig Bellamy, and Valeri Bojinov makes things rather crowded in the City of Manchester Stadium's final third, don't you think?
By adding the emotionally insecure Carlos Tevez and Roque Santa Cruz, Hughes will be challenged again this season with keeping the whereabouts of his changing room known.
Don't Look Back in Anger
That particular song by Oasis seems fit for Manchester City's new additions, all of which, with the exception of Roque Santa Cruz, stand to see their former clubs do better than their current club during the 09/10 campaign.
Tevez will surely find himself on the bench again this season, grumbling away at how unfairly Mark Hughes is treating a striker of his calibre. And Gareth Barry will watch Aston Villa challenge for a European place.
"So Sally (read Roque, Carlitos, Gareth, Emmanuel) can wait
she knows its too late as she's walking on by
my soul slides away
but don't look back in anger
don't look back in anger
I heard you (read: Fergie) say.
At least not today."
Or will it end in a champagne supernova for Manchester City? Only time will tell. In the meantime, back to listening to T.I....