Writer: Andy Leggott
Date:Friday May 25 2007
The wonderfully ridiculous soap opera that is Manchester City Football Club continues to keep the football world amused and supporters of the club banging their heads against brick walls in frustration.
To say the KGB would be proud of the levels of secrecy and silence coming from the City boardroom does not do the City board justice.
They have taken inspiration from the 'invisible man' chant and let rumours prolifigate at an alarming rate, scaring bookmakers, amnesty international and supporters in equal measure.
Sure, the're not shy at telling you about yet another new shirt or that George Michael is coming to town, but just try and search out any snippet of information on the club's direction and your hitting a true cold war iron curtain.
Today it seems speculation has put the Shinawatra takeover back on the front foot. Several news sources are reporting that the deal is proceeding smoothly quoting Shinawatra's lawyer Noppadon Pattama.
'Everything is going smoothly,' Pattama told Reuters.
'We hope the deal will be formally concluded by early June.'
Not content with that story the press have today increased speculation that ex England manager and lothario, Sven Goran Eriksson, has done a u-turn and expressed an interest in the vacant manager's role.
Eriksson, who only last week ruled himself out of the running to succeed Pearce, has given an exclusive interview to the Manchester Evening News claiming it would be an honour to manage City.
Eriksson said: 'City is a big, big club with unbelievable support. It would be an honour for me to be manager, like it would be for all other managers. Every time I visited the club as England coach I was struck by the passion of the fans and was made to feel welcome and at home by nice people.
'They have a beautiful stadium and the possibility of a new owner and of course I would talk to them if they indicate they are interested in me becoming coach.
'City is an established Premiership club with great potential and I know they have ambitions to be challenging higher up the table.'
Responding to criticism that he may have acted in an insulting manner to the club in a previous interview, Eriksson added: 'I was asked if I'd had talks with City and I said `no' but a break in the programme and a different question made it appear I had said something different,'
So all quiet on the City front then? You bet your life not.
I understand the need for silence during takeover talks but some sort of communication from the club regarding its direction would be welcome; perhaps even just a little reassurance to calm the speculation.
What I will add is whatever anyone's opinion with regards Sven the fact that he is linked with City does point to something happening soon.
If there was serious doubts about the takeover then I would expect to see us linked with lower profile managers than Sven and Ranieri.
When you see a 'City in for Warnock' style headline then that's the time to worry.
Date:Friday May 25 2007
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