With rumours regarding Falcao's future flying about, Brendon Netto assesses the implications his signing would have on Manchester City..
The January transfer window is still over two and a half months away but already we could be witnessing the beginning of another epic transfer saga. Radamel Falcao’s sensational performances particularly over the last three seasons have seen his stock rise exponentially and the striker is now the most sought after player in Europe. Atletico Madrid did exceptionally well to hold on to their star man over the summer but with interest rising among potential buyers and their financial situation looking bleak, the club’s grip on the player seems to be relaxing.
Chelsea and Real Madrid have long since been linked with a move for the Colombian international but Manchester City have joined the race for the striker as well. We discuss the implications a potential transfer to the blue half of Manchester would involve..
|We could witness a few departures to balance the books
Surplus to requirements?
Manchester City’s Football Development Executive, Patrick Vieira suggested that if the manager is keen on signing Falcao, it is a possibility despite Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations looming large. Although you would think that at least a couple of players would need to leave in order to fund the deal which will certainly come at a colossal fee.
City are champions of England and have won the FA Cup in the season before last but they don’t come close to boasting the kind of glitz and glamour on offer at Chelsea and particularly Real Madrid. Madrid’s prestige and allure is well recognized and admired while Chelsea’s success over the past eight years is certainly impressive as well.
The Citizens may attempt to lure the Atletico Madrid hitman with the promise of the future and the ‘project’ that is just starting to bear fruit. However, their biggest bargaining chip will inevitably be the financial rewards they are capable of offering. To do that they may have to bid farewell to a couple of players of whom at least one is likely to be a striker.
Eden Dzeko may be the favourite to depart having attracted suitors already this summer in Juventus and AC Milan. Roberto Mancini is unlikely to shed a tear if Carlos Tevez would be the one to move away while getting rid of Mario Balotelli may also bring on a sigh of relief from the Italian tactician. Gareth Barry or even James Milner could be used to make space for Falcao’s arrival as well.
|The Aguero-Falcao partnership would be a force to be reckoned with
The perfect partner for Falcao
The most enticing aspect of the move would be the prospect of Falcao and Sergio Aguero joining forces. The deadly pairing would be capable of rivalling any strike partnership in the world including the duo across town of Robin Van Persie and Wayne Rooney.
Aguero has always preferred to play as the second striker rather than the one leading the line but when playing alongside Tevez, the older Argentine is usually the one occupying the deeper role. With Falcao being more than comfortable playing as the main striker, both forwards can flourish in their preferred roles.
Aguero will be able to find more space for himself to dribble into and will always be on the lookout to slip a ball through for his Colombian counterpart. In turn, Falcao would be able to hold the ball up well and bring Aguero into the game.
|Clinical finishing comes to the fore
He can score from nothing
There is little wrong with the finishing of City’s strikers at the moment but their ambition has seen them rise to compete at the very highest level where mistakes are not acceptable and are usually punished.
Falcao would bring a whole new level of goal scoring to City’s attack. Not only is he apt at burying good chances, he would regularly score from half chances and sometimes even when there seems to be no danger. It is that ability to score goals out of nothing that would add the ‘X’ factor to City’s goal scoring threat. Mancini’s men could finally become serious contenders for the Champions League as well.
|The defence will continue to be neglected
City's defence have looked below par
There are a few drawbacks to this rather expensive albeit remarkable potential acquisition and one of them would be the inability to rectify problems at the other end of the pitch. The signing would leave City struggling with their already absurd wage bill and would make the task of acquiring a top notch centre back next to impossible.
Their defensive frailties have been evident at the start of this season but finding a suitable central defensive partner for Vincent Kompany would have to take the back seat. Joleon Lestcott is a highly accomplished defender but Mancini doesn’t seem to trust the Englishman’s ability on the ball as he regularly gives possession away.
|Other players will fall down the pecking order|
Tevez could find himself out of favour
Whenever a new player arrives he brings with him competition for places in the first team and Falcao’s addition would be no different. Someone has to fall down the pecking order and it’s most likely to be Tevez if he’s still at the club while whoever remains of Balotelli and Dzeko will suffer a similar fate.
Aguero may not be invincible either as Mancini may decide to use only one striker for certain games like he did against Real Madrid in their Champions League opener this season. Falcao would be the undisputable choice to lead the line should the Italian boss decide to deploy a lone striker which would relegate Aguero’s services to the bench.
Going by the points above, it looks as though Falcao would be a very welcome addition to Mancini’s troops but only at a price. Despite the financial set back and the need to balance the books, City would certainly benefit from landing the striker but they will unquestionably face stiff competition for his signature.
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