Friday 30 January 2015

Five of the biggest transfers from Arsenal to Man City

Published 07/08/2014 | 11:38

The Premier League champions and FA Cup winners clash in the season's curtain raiser this weekend and we look at five of the biggest transfers between the two clubs.

Bacary Sagna

1. Who will win the battle of the Arsenal strikers?
 While Arsene Wenger longed for more options upfront last season, the Arsenal manager now has a plethora of candidates fighting for a starting role. Olivier Giroud is currently the man in possession, but the Frenchman may not have regained fitness in time for Sunday's match. In his absence Wenger could decide to employ new signing Alexis Sanchez in a forward role (more of that later) or he could plump for either Yaya Sanogo, who scored four goals in a pre-season win over Benfica last week, or Joel Campbell.
1. Who will win the battle of the Arsenal strikers? While Arsene Wenger longed for more options upfront last season, the Arsenal manager now has a plethora of candidates fighting for a starting role. Olivier Giroud is currently the man in possession, but the Frenchman may not have regained fitness in time for Sunday's match. In his absence Wenger could decide to employ new signing Alexis Sanchez in a forward role (more of that later) or he could plump for either Yaya Sanogo, who scored four goals in a pre-season win over Benfica last week, or Joel Campbell.
2. Where will Alexis Sanchez be deployed? Much will be expected of £35m signing Sanchez, but the key question is how Wenger plans to use him. The former Barcelona man has often been used as a winger throughout his career and he may well start in that position in the absence of the injured Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. However, Wenger could also choose to deploy Sanchez through the middle after last week saying: "He is a striker and he's a good finisher."
3. Will Calum Chambers be worth his £16million fee? The former Southampton man did not ask Arsenal to shell out such a huge amount of cash for him, but whether he likes it or not he will now have to show he was worth it. The 19-year-old showed his ability at right-back last season although he lost his place in the side by the end of the campaign. In the absence of Per Mertesacker and Thomas Vermaelen, Chambers was employed in central defence in the pre-season defeat against Monaco. He is more likely to play at full-back this season though, although Wenger last week said: "He can play as well central midfield because he’s got good technique, good mobility and is a great distance runner."
4. How will Arsenal fans react to Bacary Sagna? Arsenal were prepared to pay Sagna £70,000 per week, but the France international rejected the offer and moved to Manchester City instead, where he now earns around £120,000 a week. Explaining his reasons for leaving London, he said: "For people who think it’s for money, it’s not. I just wanted to change. I needed a boost in my career and I think it was about time." Arsenal supporters are unlikely to see his departure in such a manner.
5. Will Frank Lampard make his Manchester City debut? This time last year no one would have predicted Lampard playing for Manchester City this season. After being ditched by Chelsea and joining New York City - who are part-owned by Manchester City - last month, he has now returned to England to play on loan at City until January. One person who is not a fan of the situation is Wenger, who questioned: "Is it a way to get around the fair play? I don't know. It looks like all of these 'City' clubs will feed the main club Manchester City." Lampard could make his first appearance for his new club at Wembley.
6. Can Stevan Jovetic finally prove his worth in the absence of Sergio Aguero and Alvaro Negredo? Montenegro forward Jovetic was hampered by illness and injury during his first season at Manchester City after joining from Fiorentina for £22million last summer. With first choice forwards Aguero and Negredo injured, Jovetic has been in prolific goalscoring form in pre-season, making it four goals in two games in the International Champions Cup. Those perfomances prompted Manuel Pellegrini to say: "I'm sure if he continues in this way he will show why he is here. If he's fit all the year, he will be a very important player for us."
7. Will off-field issues affect Yaya Toure on the pitch? No one really knows the full details of what went on with Toure and Manchester City this summer. The midfielder had a turbulent few months after his younger brother died, looking certain to leave City after a series of bizarre rows when he accused them of disrespecting him on his birthday and complaining about being denied time to spend with his dying brother. However, Toure now insists he is focused on playing for the club. "It was not a case of me wanting to leave the club. I stayed quiet, I believe that is the right way, and at the end of the day it’s my decision," he said. "I will stay at Man City for as long as possible."
8. How will new Manchester City signing Fernando fit in? With Fernandinho not yet back from his post-World Cup holiday, the role of holding midfielder may well fall to new signing Fernando. Javi Garcia was sometimes called upon to play in that position last season, but former Porto man Fernando is a step up in class and may make his competitive debut for City in Sunday's match.
9. Can Jack Wilshere show he has come of age? England midfielder Wilshere has made headlines for the wrong reasons this summer after being pictured partying and smoking in Las Vegas. Having burst onto the scene as a teenager, Wilshere has suffered numerous injury setbacks, including a broken foot last season, and now faces a potentially career-defining campaign. "This is a big season for Jack but he is in his best pre-season shape for three years," said his manager Arsene Wenger.
10. Can Arsenal hack it with the best teams in England? Last season Arsenal conceded six goals away from home against Manchester City, five goals at Liverpool and six goals at Chelsea yet still managed to finish fourth. Sunday will have no bearing on the Premier League, but Arsene Wenger will be keen to send a message to their title rivals that Arsenal mean business this season and will not be pushed over so easily.

The French full-back broke Arsenal hearts when he became the latest Gunner to move directly to the blue half of Manchester when he became a free agent in the summer. One of the most consistent full-backs in the Premier League, he joined Arsenal from Auxerre in 2007.

Said in recent interviews that Samir Nasri and Gael Clichy told him to join them at City.

Samir Nasri

France international Samir Nasri enjoyed three productive years with Arsenal before calling time on his career with the Gunners in 2011 and joining City for a fee believed to be €25m. He played 125 times for Arsene Wenger’s side, becoming a firm fans’ favourite in the process before incurring the wrath of the same supporters when making it clear he wanted out at the Emirates.

Has notched up 129 appearances for City but missed out on the World Cup when manager Didier Deschamps left the play-maker out of his 23-man squad.

Gael Clichy

The French full-back Clichy had to wait four years before finally winning a regular starting berth at Arsenal where Ashley Cole had previously blocked his path into the senior side. Clichy then became first choice left-back for the next four seasons before joining City for £7m in 2011 having made 264 appearances for the Gunners.

Last year he made just 15 Premier League appearances, his lowest tally since Cole was still with Arsenal.

Kolo Toure

Another former member of Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’, Kolo Toure spent seven seasons with the Gunners and made more than 300 appearances during his time in North London. Kolo joined City in 2009 for £14m and it transpired to be a good bit of business for the Gunners ans the Ivory Coast failed to hit his previous personal highs at the Etihad, though did win a Premier League title winner’s medal and an FA Cup winner’s during his four year stay at the club.

Emmanuel Adebayor

Emmanuel Adebayor joined Arsenal from Monaco for £3m in 2006 and spent three years in London where his time was a mixed bag. After a slow start, he became a key figure in the team and would score 62 goals in 142 appearances for the Gunners.

Similar to Toure, failed to shine at City despite a bright start following the £25m move. Scored on his debut at Blackburn Rovers and memorably scored against the Gunners on his Etihad debut, running the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of the Arsenal supporters.

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