In the blue corner…

July 19 2007

While Sven Goran Eriksson’s appointment as Manchester City manager may have brought a sense of gleeful anticipation to the red half of the city (who took more delight than most in his repeated failings as England manager), his first few signings suggest he’s lost none of the contacts he built up during twenty very successful years as a club manager in Sweden, Portugal and Italy.

Rolando Bianchi arrives from Italy with a big price-tag, but also a burgeoning reputation. Young defensive midfielder Gelson Fernandes is rated very highly in his native Switzerland, and although Geovanni’s stock has fallen in recent years, he’s still the same player who prompted Barcelona to splash out €19.6m in the summer of 2001.

But most worrying of all – from a Stretford End perspective – is today’s report in The Times that Sven is lining up a bid for Olympiacos’s dynamic attacking midfielder Nery Alberto Castillo.

The pint-sized Mexican has pace, superb close control and an eye for goal, and this goal against Brazil in the opening game of the Copa America suggests he can do it against top class defences (although, it being Brazil, I wouldn’t like to emphasise the ‘top class defences’ part too strongly).

United fans will hope it’s just another flash-in-the-plan transfer rumour, but if Eriksson does get his man, he might just provide the kind of inspiration that once made Maine Road rise to acclaim Georgiou Kinkladze.

One suspects City’s goal-scoring woes at Eastlands might quickly become a thing of the past too, provided Castillo fares better than the last Castillo to encounter the light blue half of Manchester.


3 Responses to “In the blue corner…”

  1. Euro soccer web sites hail Sven-Goran Eriksson as “England’s and club football’s most successful coach manager in the history of the sport” while expressing amazement at the British press “death wish” that drove out the man who took a national team that was a “laughing stock” in Euro2000 and turned it into one that cruised to top place in every qualifying group, lost only 5 competitive games and rose to FIFA No.4 World ranking during W-Cup 2006. TheFA rank Sven as England’s 2nd best manager after Sir Alf Ramsey, but only due to the “fluke win” (?) of ’66 when the opposition was much reduced and there were no antagonistic Swiss refs or stroppy scousers etc., in 1966 to sabotage our national hopes. On all other statistics Sven is apparently unmatched.
    Let the tabloid hacks and other clubs continue to try and undermine the public support and appreciation for “Svennis” that has become very clear in recent polls. I am sure that Mr Eriksson will continue to retain his dignity and simply get on with a job in which he clearly has no peer.
    It’s also worth remembering that the same England squad have just dropped to FIFA No.12 rank and continue to free fall with no certainty of even qualifying for Euro 2008 without the “magic influence” of the Swedish enigma?
    City fans have every reason to celebrate and the next few soccer seasons will be much more interesting I think…..

  2. Tom Williams Says:

    I accept that Eriksson’s record as a club manager is impressive, and his success in ensuring England qualified for three successive international tournaments should not be overlooked, but consecutive eliminations at the quarter-final stage of those tournaments – twice on penalties – has to be regarded as a failure, particularly when you consider the talent in last summer’s World Cup squad.

  3. Dave Says:

    Good to have you back lad. Forgotten about Kinkladze. How cool was it to have a georgian called Georgiou. If only other players had such good names to remember their nationality

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