Close Knit City Squad Dodges Hazardous Bullet
There's been something not quite right about Eden Hazard's bizarre public string-along over his next destination after Lille. Relief all round. It's Chelsea...
As was documented here and elsewhere across Planet Blue last week, a talented 21 year old, who is far from the finished European article gobbing off about how many starts he expects to make in his new shirt next season had City's hierarchy, nevermind the fans, shifting uneasily in their seats. In point of fact, until the Lille President opens up, we won't know for sure whether or not a firm bid to buy the exciting winger's services was lodged from The Etihad Stadium offices.
Anyroad, he's finally been on YouTwitFace tonight announcing he's chosen to go to Chelsea, who won the Champions League in fine style.
Certainly, the facts, the figures and numbers on this one will make for interesting reading following the numerous revelations in France that his agent was after a monster (copyright Eric Hall) cut in the deal.
But more importantly in this Blue's eyes, despite relentless pressure from outside, Roberto Mancini has forged a tight knit siege mentality into his young English Champions. Most notably throughout last season his men always talked up their ambition for the team, not themselves.
Hazard has been sensational in Ligue 1 but he will not get the same time on the ball he has enjoyed in The Premier League. He can also expect some clatterings. He has something of an erratic nature and having previously talked up his desire to play in Italy and Spain last year the last thing City need is another powder keg alongside the resurgent Mario Balotelli and Carlos Tevez.
City are in a very different situation to that of Chelsea and United. Both have a raft of ageing players that need to be replaced with increasing urgency. What a lot of hacks tend to overlook is that all of Mancio's signings have either been early to mid twenties in age. The Premier League title secured, it's a comfortable pre-dynastic place to be in.
This correspondent doesn't think this is a case of we move on. I'd suggest that the shrewd City set up have their eye on numerous similar targets. Preferably those with established Champions and Premier League experience.
Tell you what though, this flirtatious little episode doesn't half remind us of how far the rags' stock has fallen!
Is Eden Hazard Having A Laugh?
all times East Manchester
Fri 27 July Arsenal, Birds Nest Stadium, Beijing, Friendly
Su 12 August, Chelsea, Villa Park, Community Shield
Sa 18 August, To Be Confirmed, PL
PREMIER LEAGUE FIXTURES:
The 2012/13 Premier League season will kick off on Saturday, 18th August 2012. The Fixtures will be announced on Monday, 18th June, with the first set of television picks selected approximately 2-3 weeks later.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FIXTURES:
The draw for the 2012/13 Champions League Group Stage will take place in Monaco on Thursday, 30th August. The opening round of games will kick off in the week commencing Monday, 17th September.