Owen Hargreaves to Manchester City. How on earth has that come about?!
Having been released by Manchester United this summer, Hargreaves must have felt that his chance at the very top of English football had gone for good. Rumors of talks with West Brom and even ex-England boss Sven Goran Eriksson taking Hargreaves to big spending Leicester were rife, with Roy Hodgson seemingly favorite to clinch Hargreaves signature.
But then with a day to go before the deadline was due to close, murmurings of Man City talking to the two time Champions League winner were circulating. The club accused of buying the best in order to challenge United were signing their cast-offs for free!
The early season injury to Nigel de Jong and with the Citizens due to lose Yaya Toure during the African Nations Cup, Mancini has identified a perfect anchorman as a replacement. Hargreaves, the 30 year old, has everything needed to be regarded as a top class signing; major honors in top European leagues, experience with England at the highest level and the aforementioned Champions League winners medals. The only thing missing were the millions normally needed to secure a signature like Hargreaves’.
Let’s make no mistakes, City have hedged their bets, putting Hargreaves through a strenuous three hour medical and placing him on a one year pay-as-you-play deal means there isn’t really anything to lose for the noisy neighbours.
But Hargreaves has shown he has the strength of mind to make it again. He moved away from his Canadian home to Munich alone aged just 13 to realize his dream of playing at the top. And when booed by England fans during a friendly with Hungary in 2006, Hargreaves reacted months later by signing for Man Utd, starring in England’s central midfield and well and truly sticking two fingers up to his doubters.
Time will tell if Hargreaves can again reach the very top. Here’s hoping he gets the luck he deserves.