Writer: Johnny Baguette
Date:Monday August 6 2012
There's an air of reconciliation about Roque Santa Cruz this pre-season and the big 30 year old striker seems to be enjoying being around a contented City squad...
Well regarded as an all round nice bloke, the loaned out now back again Paraguayan who has a dreadful appearance record of 6 Premier League starts since his off crutches signing from Blackburn three years ago for a whopping £17,500,000 seems pretty chipper:
'It was great to play for 70 minutes (against Limerick) - I had a good, long season last year and I'm just coming back from holiday and feeling good, looking forward to what is coming in the next two weeks.'
In fact, you get the feeling that Crocky wouldn't be that mithered if he had to hang around the bench here and there for The Blues across the coming four competitions campaign. Let's face it, City are going to need as much strength in depth as possible, and Roberto Mancini could do worse than hang on to a Plan B big man with top level English experience who isn't a renowned boat rocker. Point of order. Emmanuel Adebayor, though prolific when he wants to be, isn't likely to be considered as he grapples with his finances and Spurs talks.
Dedryk Boyata is another Blue who appears to have benefitted from loan spells elsewhere and right now looks a better defensive bet than Stefan Savic who continues to fail to convince and without doubt looks like he would benefit from a season on the road somewhere.
Some Blues are concerned that City have yet to recruit in order to strengthen a title winning squad but having shrewdly constructed a group of hungry young players now fully gelled under Mancio's no nonsense guidance, surely City should only bring in men who absolutely fit the bill. At the right price - now the nucleus of the squad is assembled and winning trophies.
Taggart out of town over the past few seasons smokescreened his belief that the right top quality additions aren't out there, but in truth, this line of thinking could perhaps apply more to City now than a Stretford squad in desperate need of investment.
There are many Blues who also won't be ringing alarm bells if City do not recruit this summer outside of the crucial contract extensions of Mancio and Vincent Kompany. The line of thinking here is that City's hierachy, since the painful lessons learned from Kakagate are nobody's mugs and leave it to Mancio to straight bat hack questions over potential signings whilst maintaining radio silence.
Let's face it, we have much to look forward to after a superb close season both on the pitch and off it. We've seen a host of MCFC Academy lads blooded for starters. Our squad is also bristling with the belief that winning trophies brings.
Ok, there are still defiant soundbites harking back to days of yore coming out of the swamp but let's see how they cope with six away Premier League away fixtures following midweek Champions League commitments this season. Let's also see how Carlos Tevez and Sergio Aguero measure up after a full pre-season. They are likely to really get amongst Chelsea in the season's curtain raiser at Villa Park next Sunday.
However, there might yet be a couple of surprise arrivals in store. This correspondent will settle for an out and out winger and midfield utility option. Patience is a Blue virtue.
In the meantime, City's first bid for Liverpool defender Daniel Agger is imminent.
all times East Manchester
Sun 12 Aug 13h30 Chelsea, Villa Park, Community Shield
Sa 18 Aug 15h00 Southampton, The Etihad, PL
Sa 25 Aug 15h00 Liverpool, Anfield, PL
Sa 01 Sep 17h30 QPR, The Etihad, PL
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.
Date:Monday August 6 2012
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