Manchester City’s imminent signing of Fernandinho could spell the end of Gareth Barry’s Citizens’ career.
Having brokered a £34m deal with Ukrainian powerhouse Shakhtar Donetsk, it’s simply a case of taking care of the admin before the Brazilian star is confirmed as a City player.
He was recently photographed leaving the Manchester hospital where the Premier League runners up conduct their medicals, suggesting that the completion of the deal has become a question of when, not if.
A central midfielder known for his ability to orchestrate play from deep, Fernandinho is equipped with all of the attributes that top European sides crave.
This justifies the astronomical fee that City have agreed to part with for a player who has never been tested at a level beyond the Ukrainian top tier domestically and has limited international experience to boot.
In addition to his creativity, he also boasts defensive prowess, proving himself adept when it comes to halting opposition attacks and acting as a platform for his side to threaten on the break.
While Barry is solid when it comes to breaking up play, a sluggishness on the ball is something he is frequently criticised for and incisive passing is an asset that has been absent from his locker throughout his career.
The defensive midfield battering ram is an outdated concept, which spells bad news for Barry as far as his City tenure is concerned.
Teams that threaten on a continental scale, an objective City have spectacularly failed to meet in the previous two seasons, have all relied upon a holding midfielder who is as capable in possession as they are at shutting down the opposition.
Fernandinho is moulded in such a fashion and his acquisition is a necessary one regarding the Citizens improving their fortunes in Europe next season.
As it stands, however, City are unfancied 12/1 shots to lift the coveted Champions League trophy next term.
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