Joe Hart and Adam Johnson seem to have bright futures ahead of them, but what of the Brave English Lions further down City’s pecking order. Lescott, Barry & Milner all came to City for big transfer money, but how have they performed?
All statistics are gathered from the Manchester City and Premier League websites. Each has been given 2 ratings: one for performance, one for value for money.
Games Played this season: 10
Team Goals Conceded: 7
Team Clean Sheets: 3 of the games started
Lescott is maligned in all quarters, he suffers from a huge price tag and he has never looked close to the player David Moyes and Mark Hughes valued him at. He prospers against more ‘traditional’ footballing teams and deals with arial balls competently, he also uses his strength well. In the modern game however he is less impressive and teams that play the ball intricately leave Lescott like a fox in a hen house not knowing which way to turn.
On a positive note he always gives it his all, and has very rarely grumbled when omitted. In many ways Lescott is the footballing equivalent of Nick Clegg – he was ludicrously expensive and won’t be around in 18 months, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have his uses from time to time.
Overall Performance: 5/10
Value for Money: 3/10
Games Played this season: 23
Team goals conceded: 18
Pass Completion: 85%
When Barry isn’t knocking back Jagerbombs at house parties with Scottish students, he is doing a decent yet unremarkable job in the City midfield. He is always available to receive the ball and move it on quickly (normally backwards or sideways) to another blue shirt.
His pace makes Johnny Vegas look like Theo Walcott, meaning when a game is more frenetic it can pass him by, but on the whole his partnership with everyone’s favourite Dutchman is good. He clearly has a decent footballing brain and covers full back positions when there are gaps. Fortunately his price tag was not particularly high for football these days, and he has proved to be a solid yet less than glamorous performer.
Overall Rating: 7/10
Value for money: 7/10
Price: £18,000,000 plus Superman (now Averageman)
Games Played this season: 21
Pass Completion 75%
Milner looks like he belongs down a mine. He would run through walls for teams he plays for (head first by the look of him), he is all about drive and effort. I expect long term that he will go on to replace Barry as he is much better centrally than on the wing, something Fabio Capello should maybe take on board.
Sadly when in wide positions he has a tendancy to cross the ball into an empty box, he has however been unlucky to not score a couple of goals. He is not the quickest player but offers good defensive coverage and is a definite team player. Much like Lescott though he was very expensive and needs a solid run in his best position to show City fans his best work.
Overall Performance: 6/10
Value for Money (at this point): 4/10
Overall, Barry is most likely the best in terms of performance – cost ratio, but that isn’t saying much and he divides opinions amongst City fans. Personally I think we aren’t the same without him and much of his good work goes unnoticed.
Milner should really be playing in Barry’s position more and more and making it his own, he hasn’t shown anything yet but there are signs.
Lescott is nothing more than decent cover in most cases he can be useful against Wolves, Stoke and Birmingham, but less so against teams nearer the top and in the Champions League he could be a liability.
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