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Why Manchester City May Ultimately Regret Signing Wilfried Bony


With the January transfer window open, here’s my column to sort through all of the good buys and bad buys in this calendar month as clubs across Europe attempt to add depth to their squad while others look for a way to offload excess weight or to make a sizable profit.

For this week’s column, I have two good buys and one bad buy.


Bad Buys

Wilfried Bony
Manchester City (£25 million from Swansea City, potentially rising to £28 million)

This might be the sexiest and highest-profile signing in Europe this window. It also could be one of the worst. A panic move by a Manchester City side that ill-advisedly let Alvaro Negredo leave in the summer, Bony might not be ready for a move to a big club. While at Swansea, Bony took several months to acclimate to Premier League life before becoming a deadly goal scorer in 2014. But nailing down a place and keeping form at a top club fighting on multiple fronts for trophies is a whole different ball of wax. With no summer training and preseason friendlies to blend into the squad, in addition to being away at the African Cup of Nations, this has all the makings of a panic move. You cannot also help but think that the Blues have overpaid for Bony who while a good striker, hasn’t established himself over a longer period of time in a top league. But perhaps the need to pip Chelsea and Liverpool to the player forced the high price.


Good Buys

Eljero Ella
Southampton (Loan from Werder Bremen)

The pacey Dutch winger hit a speed bump in his career when he was sold to Juventus in 2011. After excelling in Dutch league under Steve McClaren with FC Twente and a successful 2010 World Cup Elia was considered a rising star in World Football. But the disasterous time at Juve and bumps more recently at Bundesliga strugglers Werder Bremen allowed Louis van Gaal to drop Elia from the Dutch side. However, he should be able to slot in nicely to Ronald Koeman’s setup and already started the his first match with the club, the historic 1-0 victory at Old Trafford against Manchester United. If Southampton is to truly push for a top four position, improved play from the wide areas is critical. Ella can help provide that.

Michael Keane
Burnley (Undisclosed from Manchester United after loan period)

Keane has proved to be a solid squad player for a Clarets side that has surprised observers with its cohesion and team spirit. Keane along with his brother Will are two of the better prospects produced in recent years by the Manchester United Academy. I long believed Keane had a future with the Red Devils especially given the shaky state of United’s backline, but manager Louis Van Gaal’s decision to sell Keane outright is a great break for Burnley. With a strict transfer spending limit and wage cap, the Clarets have to look for bargains in the market, and players who can produce without acclimation and Keane has proven to be both. Manager Sean Dyche continues to work wonders with this side, and Keane could be a key to the Clarets staying in the league come May.

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  1. Why?

    January 13, 2015 at 6:17 am

    Wow how did you come to this conclusion on any of these players?

    Michael Keane didn’t set the World or even the championship on fire with Leicester City, Blackburn or Derby county non of them went for his signature, he’s played OK on loan with Burnley, that’s OK not thumbs up good lol. So he’s just a cheap signing for Burnley at their level he’ll do a job but that’s about it.
    The writers reason for this? Hmmm he was a Man u player as a youth that wasn’t going to get in their team. So they loaned him out till he did enough to earn a move. Writer he gotten carried away with how the British press reacts tho Man u youth players ‘they are the new (fill in gap), they’re going to be World class’ The reality is the league has many over priced average ex man U youth players in it. Here’s one more to add to that list, even though he most probably won’t be in the division next year. Reality of this player. not good enough for the premier league but will do a OK job in the Championship, good signing? NOT

    Eljero Ella, a player who played well as a youngster in the poor Dutch league with FC Twente, he forced a move to Hamburg off the back of this and then got injured after not a bad start which saw him get an international call. After coming back he didn’t play well enough to hold down a place so moaned that he didn’t fit and he wanted more games or he’d think about his future, he didn’t need to they got rid for the same price they bought him.

    Juventus took a chance because of his FC Twente form and first few games at Hamburg at a relatively cheap price why not? This didn’t work out at all, this player moan and groaned for a move not happy at not being in the team even though he’d done zero to be in it. Juve had won the league easily, Eljero Ella demanded a transfer which was happy granted by Juve even at a £3m loss!

    He moved to Werder Bremen and near enough straight away started moaning about how didn’t he fit into the team he didn’t do to well in his first season the second got a bit better but as in the past was dogged with poor behavior which cause him to be dropped yet again and made the club get rid they loaned him to Southampton.

    Up to now he’s played one game and was subbed after 60 minutes his replacement scored the winner, At the age of 27 you’d think this could be his last chance at the level he now is even though the club isn’t a step up so much, the league is, he’s always courted controversy and never excepted he may not have been good enough moaning or pushing for move near enough straight away. He’s isn’t even a full signing even though it surely wouldn’t have took much more than £2m-£3m to sign him. Good signing? I’m pretty sure this player is not gonna work out at all. He’s a journeyman and that’s it. Everything about him suggests this. I find it weird the writer hasn’t considered any of this and feel he doesn’t really know what he’s talking about.

    Bony played in the Czech league and won and the cup it, also scoring 17 goals in 24 games the following year earned a move to the Dutch league with Vitesse where he scored almost 1 in 2 in his first two seasons, in his third he scored 37 goals in 36 games he finished this season as the leagues top scorer and voted the leagues best player.

    This made Swansea cough a record and Welsh record fee of £12m for him where he became the clubs top scorer, leagues 4th joint top scorer along with Aguero and Rooney. This year is a 1 in 2 striker.

    Negredo asked for a move from City as he couldn’t settle, but this and his poor form after injury wasn’t enough, the fact Valencia offered a £4m amortization loan fee followed by a parented £25m sale for a 30 year old was too good to turn down for anyone. The words ripped and off are coming to mind, incredible amount for this player who cost around £16m as there wasn’t time to activate any add ons’! A £13m profit, Negredo’s qualities were strength and power,

    Bony his replacement has those attributes and more at 4 years younger. Although it must be stressed Bony hasn’t signed for City yet, but at a cost of £28m would seem a very good signing to me, why? City lost that power and strength option when Negredo left they are getting it back with Bony a player who is used to playing for a ‘passing’ side similar to City’s style, the difference being he will now have the leagues best play maker and other World class players supplying him with ammunition, he will be at a team that can afford to keep him fresh not needing to play him every game. This is exactly the kind of player City need different to their other strikers but a proven all round top player and he’s 100% proven that all over Europe at all levels. Good signing? Time will prove that I’m sure as it will show this writer should have actually done more than simply mirror a media that is always wanting city signing, team and owners to fail if he reports to be a City fan or not. This is rubbish with zero foundation.

  2. Tony Butterworth

    January 12, 2015 at 4:38 pm

    Not sure why anyone is surprised. This writer always tries to be controversial and contrary and just ends up showing his lack of knowledge.

    • Sun Jihai

      January 13, 2015 at 9:36 pm

      He really does. He also has claimed in the past to be a City fan but frequently betrays an appalling lack of knowledge about the club.

  3. Preamble One'oh-one

    January 12, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    Wow, what a desperately ill-informed piece. You surely must be trolling with this article? Unless you are a rather upset united fan, in which case; “there, there…”. If you knew anything about City, Bony and for that matter, the EPL you would realise your way off base. Or is this your own personal dig because you are butt-hurt after Lampard staying for the rest of the season with City?

    • Rocket_Sauce13

      January 12, 2015 at 9:46 pm

      Apparently the lad’s a blue. Even wrote a book called “Blue With Envy.” True story.

      • Sun Jihai

        January 13, 2015 at 9:38 pm

        I sincerely doubt he is. Or if he is it is a self-hating “Blue” of the David Conn sort.

        I think he is trying to capitalise on the recent success of the club and at the very most is an extremely casual fan.

  4. Nosferatu

    January 12, 2015 at 4:03 pm

    Wow, such anger from the City folk.

    I like Bony a lot personally–he’s a great talent, fun to watch. But I do worry about the fit in Manchester, especially for the rest of this season, for the reasons laid out by Kartik here. Those doubts don’t have anything to do with his talent. It’s not clear that he’s the type of player who can just be slotted into any role and thrive.

    • Rocket_Sauce13

      January 12, 2015 at 9:43 pm

      It’s not clear either way whether he’ll slot in or not so I don’t understand why people print that opinion as fact when there’s no evidence to support it. He moved from the Dutch league to England’s top league so there was probably going to be a period of settling in. He’s been in the PL for the better part of two seasons now and has shown his quality over the past calendar year.

      Sure, he may be a flop, but then again, he might score 15+ for City on their way to claiming the title again this season. Let the lad play a few games before getting the claws out.

      • Nosferatu

        January 13, 2015 at 1:39 am

        Yeah, I agree with you–I guess my point is just that it’s not a move without risk (arguably a lot of risk, considering the money involved). I mean, you can look at someone as talented as Luis Suarez and say he hasn’t fit in as well at Barca as many would have hoped. Not necessarily a reflection on his talent–or what’s to come between now and the summer–but I could easily see the Bony signing not working out so great for City, either.

        I would say that Kartik maybe was a bit too assertive in his negative proclamation in this article, though. Bony is an excellent player; I could just see him not showing his full potential until the fall.

        • Jason Halfpenny

          January 13, 2015 at 5:52 am

          Every move has risk you moron, Bony will hit the ground running along side Aguero and all you bitter little City hating cnuts can crawl back under your stinking little rocks. Bony will lift the title and rub the salt in hard, we now have all our best players back fit. COOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMON CITY, LETS HAVE IT

  5. blueknight

    January 12, 2015 at 2:36 pm

    just looked at this… and have my confirmation your a clown ! stick to American Football you yanks know NOTHINg ABOUT football.. and by your comments you proove it.

    Bony will be fantastic at city..

    About Kartik Krishnaiyer
    A lifelong lover of soccer, the beautiful game, he served from January 2010 until May 2013 as the Director of Communications and Public Relations for the North American Soccer League (NASL). Raised on the Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the old NASL, Krishnaiyer previously hosted the American Soccer Show on the Champions Soccer Radio Network, the Major League Soccer Talk podcast and the EPL Talk Podcast. His soccer writing has been featured by several media outlets including The Guardian and The Telegraph. He is the author of the book Blue With Envy about Manchester City FC.

  6. Andrew Zabaleta Scotland

    January 12, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    On Bony i have never read such rubbish he will be a great fit for City the lad scores goals and knows the league very well there is no reason he will not be a success at city

    • Pawel

      April 21, 2016 at 3:31 am

      Oh, how stupid do you look now? Bony has been a disaster.

  7. John Evans

    January 12, 2015 at 11:49 am

    Kartik Krishnaiyer you are a clown. Have you ever seen Bony play ‘in the flesh’ ?

    Negredo’s family were unhappy in Manchester and needed to go back to Spain. IMO Bony is one of the best strikers currently playing in EPL.

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