Monday 19 March 2018

City to put block on Given's exit strategy

MANCHESTER CITY believe that acceding to requests from Shay Given for a transfer may risk a repeat of the goalkeeping calamity they suffered last April and they will demand the right to recall him from any loan deal if the 34-year-old agitates for a move.

Given (below) declared that he would seek a move if he found himself behind Joe Hart in Roberto Mancini's plans, but the tortuous events at the end of last season, when Birmingham's financial demands prevented City getting Hart back from St Andrew's when Given and Stuart Taylor were injured, have reinforced Mancini's belief that he needs two top-class 'keepers. It may therefore take heavy petitioning from Given to secure a release.

However, the Donegal man is likely to be given the gloves for City's trip to Timisoara, Romania, for their Europa League tie on Thursday, as Mancini tries to prove it is worth staying.

Spurs have also sought to capitalise on the unrest among City's squad, looking for loan deals on Joleon Lescott, now behind Kolo Toure and Vincent Kompany in the pecking order, and Micah Richards, though both proposals have been rejected.

City will seek special dispensation to get new £23m striker Mario Balotelli into their Europa League squad. UEFA will consider one change from the squads initially named.

Irish Independent

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