What the media says about Manchester City 20 December 2013 - Manchester City FC

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Season 2013/14

Independent: City to battle Barcelona for Villarreal defender

  • 20 December 2013 09:57
  • Posted by @porter_mcfc

Tis the season of transfer speculation…

Add a new name to your list of City links this morning, because Villarreal defender Mateo Musacchio is the latest player who could be booking his flight to Manchester – at least, if a report in the Independent is to be believed.

The centre-back is hot property this winter, and City are reportedly going up against Barcelona and Chelsea to secure his signature.

Writes Charles Reynolds: “The centre-back has had a great start to the La Liga season, playing every minute of Villarreal's games, and he has reportedly started to attract the interest of bigger clubs.

“Villarreal have had five clean sheets already this season and are sitting in a slightly surprising fifth place in the table, thanks in part to the defensive efforts of Musacchio.”

Remember, as ever, nothing is confirmed until you read it right here on mcfc.co.uk!

Meanwhile, City’s last match before Christmas takes place at Craven Cottage tomorrow, and John Arne Riise is keen to point out Fulham won’t be handing out any early gifts.

The former Liverpool man has his eye on all three points when the Blues come to town, before the Cottagers face a run of three crucial games against teams lower down the table.  

Riise is quoted on Goal.com as saying: "It's not a game people will expect us to win but we're prepared to go out to try and get the victory.

"We want to go off the pitch on Saturday having given our all.

"City isn't an easy game and the three games after that [against Norwich City, Hull City and West Ham] are probably bigger for us as they're against teams around us in the table.

"Those three games are massive but we'll certainly be aiming to cause an upset against City."

Fighting talk! Tomorrow’s game isn’t on TV in the UK, but never fear – you can follow the action with our Match Day centre, or check out the twitter updates.

Finally, imagine a world where Alvaro Negredo turns out in the orange shirt of Hull. Struggling? Well, Phil Brown reckons it was a real possibility a few years ago.

Negredo celebration

The Daily Express claims that Brown, who is now manager of Southend United, tried to land the striker when he left Real Madrid in 2007.

John Dillon reports: “A 6ft 1in slab of uncompromising muscle with a deft touch, Negredo could fire City to the top of the table tomorrow courtesy of their huge goal difference, if Liverpool fail to beat Cardiff.

“‘It would have been a massive coup if we had got him,’ recalls Brown, now managing Southend United. “’was going nowhere at the time and we were trying to uncover little gems. The chairman, Paul Duffen, went to the Bernabeu and we had a deal set up.

“‘You look at Negredo now and he is on fire. When you look at forwards like that, you are looking for technical ability. But the bottom line is they have to be able to put up with the rigours of the Premier League. Negredo is made for it.’”

No arguments there…

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