Shay Given:Did the Manchester City Goalkeeper "Fulop" Or Am I Missing Something?
Shay Given went down. Keepers do that from time to time.
Unfortunately, when it happens to Manchester City, the world as we know it seems on the verge of total annihilation.
I saw the injury. I love Shay Given. He is a top, top goalkeeper playing with a side challenging for the Champions League. And I personally accredit much of that charge to the valiant Shay.
But when a keeper goes down, you look to the bench. Not to another team.
And just who is on the bench, you ask?
No Joe Hart sadly. Still currently on loan and kicking with Birmingham City, he is unavailable for recall until the end of the season.
Then there is Stuart Taylor. Former Arsenal keeper with vast experience in nearly every level of English football.
Oh, but he is injured. That's understandable, who else do they have?
The second string backup to Given is the Colombian prospect David Gonzalez Giraldo.
No, it cannot be! Young David has an injury as well?
Is there anybody in the City reserves that can step up and heed the call?
Why yes, there is Faroe Islands international Gunnar Nielsen.
Brought over by Mark Hughes from Blackburn, the 23-year-old keeper had a mountain to climb once City signed Shay Given.
Fortunately, Nielsen appeared to have scaled that cliff and found himself on top.
As quickly as it came, it went.
Poor Gunnar (a full international goalkeeper, albeit with two caps) barely tested the waters.
He played 15 minutes against Arsenal, and in that time made one save.
An even more telling statistic is the fact that City, with its blistering attack, took three shots with one on target. Something tells me they were preoccupied with protecting Nielsen.
Apparently, in seeing this, Mancini had seen enough. He signed Marton Fulop on loan.
The rule states that if all senior players are injured then an emergency loan request can be made.
But how is a player who sits on the bench, clearly not in the academy, deemed a juvenile player?
They were not out of backups. Regardless of their age, they wear the shirt of Manchester City.
The argument, "they are not full professionals," is ridiculous.
Heurelho Gomes suffered a groin injury against Bolton.
With Cuicini out, we now face the decision whether to risk Gomes, or have a go with Ben Alnwick, who signed from Sunderland three years ago.
Surprise, surprise. Alnwick hasn't played a single minute for Spurs in the top flight, hell, he doesn't even have a save unlike good ol' Gunnar!
Technically, Spurs could ask for an emergency loan, you know, to keep up the "integrity" of the competition. (I vote Julio Cesar)
If City made this request in the Champions League, UEFA would laugh it off.
I hope that Gomes is fit to play.
If not, Spurs and "Big Ben" will suck it up and play on like men do.
The Premier League is rough, dare I say, Manchester City seem to be making it look soft?
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