Marseille defender Nicolas N’Koulou is a target for Manchester City and the Cameroon international could be the man to end Roberto Mancini’s transfer frustrations.
If the rumours are true then Mancini will hope that a deal can be sorted sooner rather than later. City are the only club from last year’s top six that have yet to sign anyone and the Italian has spoken of his disappointment with the lack of movement.
City’s squad is evidently still a strong one, but given that their rivals have strengthened they will need to match this if they are to retain their Premier League crown, which Mancini has insisted is a priority. However the transfer starved boss has suggested that the club may need to lower their Champions League expectations due to the lack of new faces.
Mancini does not want a complete overhaul, but he has always stressed that importance of the entire squad when competing in Europe. With this in mind, the former Inter boss is right to have some concerns.
The Agger and N’Koulou rumours highlight Mancini’s desire to bring a quality centre back in to support Joleon Lescott and Vincent Kompany. Kolo Toure has an uncertain future at the club and with Stefan Savic failing to impress last year, City will want a reliable replacement should one of their first choice centre back’s get injured.
Departures at the opposite end of the field would indicate that the champions will bring in another forward to add to their fearsome front line options. Emmanuel Adebayor and Roque Santa Cruz remain surplus to requirements and Edin Dzeko looks to be on his way out. That would leave only three recognised forwards and Mancini would quite rightly want more options. City will therefore hope to land Robin Van Persie.
There is an embarrassment of riches in midfield, but with the manager looking to add three or four players, it would not be a surprise to see him add further talent in the middle of the park. He has long been in pursuit of Daniele De Rossi and although the reported £20 million does not represent great value for a 29-year-old, City have the money and the Roma man would be a good addition.
It seems bizarre to be running the rule over a squad that a matter of months ago won the Premier League and remains supremely talented. However, Mancini will know that maintaining success will be even harder than getting his first title, particularly with the a desire to improve on last season’s Champion’s League.
It will be reassuring for City fans that the Italian is not resting on his laurels. Manchester United and Chelsea have strengthened and will again challenge the Sky Blues for the title. But if Mancini can add the three or four players he wants City will be well equipped to enjoy both a successful league and European campaign.
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience