Should Landon Donovan Join Manchester City?

Today the Late Show With David Letterman took the set outside of the Ed Sullivan Theater to show off the skills of USA soccer player Landon Donovan compared to David Letterman himself. Landon and David had a shoot out of their own on June 29, 2010 in the streets of New York City, New York. Landon seemed to be having a great time with the fans and Mr. Letterman himself.  Fame Pictures, Inc

He’s had a successful World Cup and proved last season he can play in the Premier League, but should Landon Donovan join big spending Manchester City this summer? Donovan is now in high demand, but is Manchester City the right fit for the US international’s second go at the Premier League?

As reported by Yahoo! Sports, the Champions League-hungry Mancunians are offering somewhere in the realm of $12 million to the LA Galaxy of MLS for the services of the former Everton on loan midfielder. We’ve been down this road before you’re thinking, after two pretty unsuccessful stints in the German Bundesliga, Donovan finally proved his worth in one of the world’s most competitive leagues when he joined Everton on loan last winter. In a handful of starts and appearances, thirteen to be exact, Donovan showed he’s got the pace and technical ability to compete in the Premier League.

So with a solid couple of months at Everton and a three goal World Cup campaign, the “should he or shouldn’t he go” question continues to be asked.

Loved by the Everton fans and respected by critics and pundits the country over, Donovan’s supporting role at Everton witnessed him gain the confidence he so needed to thrive on foreign soil, a variable he lacked when in Germany. David Moyes’ faith in Donovan’s potential was quickly witnessed as he stuck with Donovan time and again and even started him v Arsenal upon his arrival.

Realistically, if Donovan is to further his career in England, which I think and hope he does, wouldn’t Everton be a much better fit than Manchester City? If Everton were to make an offer, Donovan will deal with much less competition for playing time than if Manchester City get their way. City have proved to be the Real Madrid of the Premier League, seemingly buying up all the players and talent they can get their rich hands on in hopes they can break the top 4 and reach the UEFA Champions League.

A possibility is that Donovan could be third of fourth choice on the right side of midfield at City behind Craig Bellamy, Adam Johnson and Shaun Wright-Phillips, or could end up being incorporated into the side played out of position and falter. It’s not entirely sure if Donovan is even interested in a move back to the Premier League, he’s stated before his love of playing in MLS and seems to be comfortable playing at home in the US.

Donovan is now 28 years old and is obviously reaching the last 5 to 6 years of his career. But with his fit, athletic body type, Donovan could still play at the top level in England for another 3 to 4 years before heading back to MLS to finish things off. I personally hope Donovan makes a move back to England this summer, preferably at Everton. He’ll fit back into David Moyes’ plans immediately while a risky move to Manchester City could see another quick return back home if things don’t go smoothly, surely causing an abrupt and disappointing end to Donovan’s time abroad.

The questions surrounding Donovan’s future are sure to be answered in the next few months, beofre a decision comes, leave a comment letting others know your thoughts on a potential return to the Premier League for Donovan.

48 thoughts on “Should Landon Donovan Join Manchester City?”

  1. No. I dont think he would be able to see as much playing time at City when he can be a regular starter at Everton. And besides, he knows that the players, managers and Especially the fans at Everton love him and want him. Why would be go to anywhere in the EPL but Everton?

  2. Of course he should go. There is nothing wrong with being a squad player at a large club. It shouldn’t even affect his national team performances. In fact, he might be able to extend his career by learning to reinvent himself as a technical player once his speed goes. I’d like to make a comparison to Park Ji-Sung of South Korea and Manchester United. For me, they are extremely similar players and both are great squad members. Are they at a technical level you would expect of a man city or man utd? Probably not. But they bring great work rate, speed and are good people. Not to mention the bonus of being able to sell shirts in their respective regions.

  3. Will Man city tolerate those spells at which LD totally vanishes from the match? I say Everton or a team like that, a team with a very high profile will not help him.

      1. what 6 forwards are you talking about? I can only name Adebayor, Tevez and Santa Cruz along with some academy players like Ibrahim. That argument is old.

  4. I feel that he would be more useful and better appreciated at Everton. The fans like him, and he fits with club and management. Manchester City is just storing talent; trying to buy their way into glory.

    1. I think Landon Donovan would be a great replacement for Craig Bellamy. Donovan is more reliable, precise, consistent, less injury-prone, faster and younger than Bellamy.

      The Gaffer

      1. Good point Gaffer. But to be honest with all the shake ups that have ensued in that squad over the last two seasons I don’t even know if Tevez’ position is safe! Okay, my point is that even if Donovan came in and Bellamy left, I’m sure many others would follow him in. I’m all for Americans fighting for a place on a squad, but this team just doesn’t seem like much of a safe bet to me. And I’m not naive enough to think with Silva on one wing that Donovan would be looked at as an equal.

  5. I think this would be a bad move for Donovan. With all the players begging for a spot at Manchester City, he wouldn’t get as much playing time as he would need / want. I agree that Everton or a similar club would be a much better choice for him.

  6. As a USMNT fan and a MCFC fan I don’t think it’s the right move for Donovan. With David Silva, Craig Bellamy, Sean Whine-Phillips, Adam Johnson and potentially Robinho (Personally I don’t think he’ll be back) I don’t see him being much more than a squad player. Which is a bad role, I just don’t think he would really want it.

    Although in some aspects it might improve his game playing with some of the City stars.

    I think it’d be a great move for City though. With them coming to the US next month signing Donovan would be great. Especially since they’ve been holding off releasing their new kit.

    I wouldn’t be disappointed if he signed, in fact I’d probably buy a kit with his name on it. I just don’t think it’s best for him.

  7. At first I couldn’t understand why City would want to sign Donovan. Yes, he is a good player and showed his worth in the Premier League last season. But City can obviously sign better players in his position. I think it may have more to do with the fact that since Donovan is presently the biggest name in soccer in this country that trying to tap into the US market is good move for City. You get both a good squad player and perhaps an increasing fan base in the US.

  8. Think of all the jerseys with Donovan’s name on it that Manchester City can sell in this country. Great move.

  9. Not quite sure why everyone thinks he’d be behind Johnson and Wright-Phillips in the pecking order. Also, not quite sure why he still needs to prove himself to any English doubters. The guy was excellent during his loan period last season and scored three goals in 4 World Cup matches, the same number in total that England scored (and 3 better than the chest-waxing, gut-sucking-in golden boy).

    He also provides any club he joins with a flexible options for any attacking role in midfield or even as a support striker.

    Also, I don’t see the relevance of his unsuccessful spell in Germany when he was a teenager. And don’t be so dumb as to suggest he was a failure at Bayern Munich. He played well and got caught in political infighting at the club.

      1. Ah, sorry about that. I had forgotten he was older for the second stint. Nonetheless, I stand by my point that it is not relevant to what he has done since.

      2. What you need to do is ignore anything post 2007. He was criticized by every footy fan in America as well as the rest of the world for his no heart performances. Getting Beckham and Bianca off his chest was the best thing ever for his game. He’s been stellar the past year and a half. The Confederations Cup was his coming out party on the global stage.

        1. “And don’t be so dumb as to suggest he was a failure at Bayern Munich. He played well and got caught in political infighting at the club.”

          Not going to argue that it has relevance to Donovan today but he was pretty damn terrible in Germany. Players need to be able to focus on the game despite what is going on in the board room. The same “political infighting” could crop up at any club – Manchester City is the perfect breeding ground for this.

          1. Excellent point. I would assume that he’s toughened mentally in the intervening years, but anybody is going to need to be able to shut out the distractions at City in the coming seasons, I think. There’s going to be a lot of pressure from management, press, and fans, not to mention lots of big egos in a small space.

            Which is my way of saying, “No.”

  10. Of course he should go to Everton. But I don’t see Everton shelling out Man City type money for him. Will the MLS take $5 or $6mm for their most high-profile player? Most likely not.

    Sad, because LD has *zero* potential to improve his game playing in the MLS…

  11. I believe that Wright-Phillips is heading out the door at Eastlands, but with the new signing of Silva there’s hardly a reason for Donovan to pursue it. Everton loved him – as he did Everton, so I hope they wise up and make an offer for him.

  12. As a Manchester City fan I would love to see Donovan on the squad in any capacity increasing the marketability of the Blues in the US. However, as a USMNT fan first and always, Donovan should avoid Man City regardless of how much money they throw at him. It’s a Washington Redskins situation (for NFL fans) where the owner throws money to get the best position players, but not necessarily the best team. Everton is a great middle of the pack team with proven fan support of Donovan. I think we will see a two-year deal with Everton or Fulham instead of the big bucks with Man City. Regardless of the team, Donovan should go to the EPL for a stint and give it a shot. He is playing at the top of his game, why not take that last chance to play in the top league? The MLS will be here for you when you get back.

  13. Bottom line is that he won’t start for Citeh. I would definitely put Adam Johnson above him. Landycakes should go to Everton……

  14. Moving to Man C (assuming an actual offer is in the works) would probably end up like his stint at Bayern Munich — too much talent and demands, and Donovan would wither and try to get loaned back to the MLS. But I think he’s romanticizing a future at Everton when he needs to be very realistic. He won’t ever get time in the EPL as an unknown as he did in his loan spell. Teams will be more aware now of how to mark him out of games. The fans aren’t likely to love him unconditionally if he stalls, and we’ve yet to see how he copes with being benched for any amount of time. He NEEDS to go overseas, pay his dues, get established — it’ll be invaluable to him and the USMNT. The question is still open whether he’s got the mental fortitude to do it, be it Everton or Man City.

  15. Man City is not the place. They are trying to follow the NY Yankees business plan by purchasing highly talented players. However, unlike the Yankees, these players cant mesh together on the field.

    Baseball is more individual than football.

    Donovan is star in the US, but a role player on a larger platform such as the EPL.

  16. Donovan would be foolish to go too a top four chasing team where he will not get a game and is not wanted by most fans in Man City instead of joining a top four chasing club with togetherness, where he is appreciated by the players and supporters and he loves the club, also Everton have alot more pride and dignity then the soulless Man City arabs

  17. It makes no sense to join City where he will see very little playing time.

    He doesn’t fit into RM’s system and is joining a circus locker room where EGO’s dominate the entire program

  18. Landon Donovan, although clearly a talented player, would get eaten up by Man City’s talented and deep roster. City now have Silva, Johnson, Bellamy, Tevez, Adebayor, and SWP that he would have to compete with. Plus, City aren’t done signing players, and there has been a lot of noise of Milner joining the Citizens as well. As a US fan, I hope Landon goes back to Everton because he loved it there, or goes somewhere else as long as he plays regularly (Arsenal if we don’t get Joe Cole). The LA Galaxy are going to be sticklers with him because he’s their meal-ticket. If he did join I would be at a crossroads with the move. Happy for him because he would be getting a fat paycheck, but disappointed because I want to actually see him play.

    City are a big club now. Three points out of a Champions League spot last season. They won’t have to deal with Hughes drawing every single match or the ongoing Robinho headache. Plus they have already signed Boateng, Silva, and Yaya Toure’s on his way. That’s better than every English club’s haul last summer except for well, City.

    They have the money and the promise to convince the Galaxy to let him go, but the move just doesn’t make sense. Not for the club, and defintely not for Donovan.

  19. NO.
    He needs to go to a team that will play him regularly.
    If things dont go well @ City they will just through more dosh at it.

    Everton, Fulham, Villa even Birmingham CIty would all be better fits.

  20. I’m sorry, I am an Evertonian who always saw Man City as the Everton of Manchester eg. ‘the peoples club’. All of the fans making out that Donavon should go to a ‘small club’ like Everton please dont forget yourself. Don’t fall in to the category that Chelsea are now in. Mid table team, no real success along comes a billionaire the rest is history. I hate Chelsea for doing a ‘Blackburn Rovers’, I dont like Man Utd either but at least they got where they are through success and good business. It seems the only way to compete in the top four anymore is to be bought by Bill Gates and buy any player that is world class, even if he is resigned to sitting on the bench. What is happening?

  21. Landon would want to move to Everton not MCity for obvious reasons. He played and loved it there. Oh and he also mentioned he wouldn’t play for any other club in the UK!
    Coz he don’t care too much for money Coz money can’t buy you love!

  22. Landon needs to go back and sign for Everton, period. He is a perfect fit for them and would get much more playing time there than he would for City. City are just trying to buy up every player they can get their hands on. How many attacking players are they interested in? How come you never here them going after defensemen? They are idiots.

  23. No. That’d be like Onyewu going to play for AC Milan. Not worth it… okay, maybe it was worth it for Onyewu, but as far as Donovan goes… he needs to go somewhere where he’d play and get used properly, like at Everton.

  24. Everton is a great middle of the pack team. Lol. Coming from A city supporter. Its amazing City have finished in the top 6 once, but they have never won anything. They havent won anything full stop. Everton finish 4th or 5th for the last 4 seasons, and they are a great middle of the pack team. Everton are one of the most succesfull teams in the English League, if it comes to titles. Everton were the top form side this year, behind only one team Chelsea. Only bad injuries at the start were they lost over half their team. They beat all the top teams. Manu, Chelsea, and yes even City. Its amazing how short peoples memories are.

  25. Landon is staying here in USA, believe me, we need him. This is the greatest sport in the world and Premier league is the best league in the world. We few lovers of it in America need him. A few such as him may help real football acquire more fans. God knows, too many of my fellow country men are nuts over NFL, NBA and some type of wrestling. As for you my England friends, God bless you and don’t fret over the World Cup, you still have the greatest league in the world.

  26. I’d love to see Landon permanently at Everton. He connected with Buddle for a gorgeous goal in his return game to MLS. I can see him making the same kind of plays with Yakubu and being a real fan favorite for the Toffees. If he goes to Man City, he’ll be in a potentially volatile situation where he might not get much playing time. For the sake of his development as leader of the USMNT, I would much rather see him at Everton!

  27. I’m surprised that his name hasn’t been popping up more at Aston Villa. I would think that furthering the popularity of the sport in America would be in the best interest of Villa’s American owner, especially if it is by signing a player who could help his club.

    I’d be happy to see Donovan at Everton or Villa, but I’d honestly rather he stay away from City. That just seems like a bad situation to send a player to learn.

    I’m afraid this is all a mute point, though… Don Garber is set in the idea that the only way to improve the popularity of the game in the US is for MLS to keep its home-grown players. IMO, the best way to improve the popularity of the game in the US is through National Team success getting Americans interested. Send as many of our players to Europe as possible, get them playing against the best… and the MLS will reap the benefits as America becomes more respected in the football world.

    Just my .02

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