January Transfer Blueprint: Manchester City


***The Transfer Blueprint series details what each Premier League club should be looking for as the January window approaches. Comment below with your own thoughts about what each club should acquire***

We start out our Transfer Blueprint Series with Manchester City. The Citizens, at the time of this article, are tied with Arsenal for first in the Premier League. While they currently occupy the top spot despite the recent absence of striker Sergio Aguero, their play has been uneven. This isn’t a perfect side or a perfect roster.

What They Should Buy: The biggest weakness I see on the Man City roster is, surprisingly, another attacking wide man. Emphasis there should be on the term “wide.” They have quality attackers with the likes of Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva, Raheem Sterling and Samir Nasri, but only Sterling really stretches the field laterally.

Jesus Navas is, theoretically, the other wide man but he’s just not good enough for a title contender. He offers a lot of pace, but his end product is shockingly bad. He hasn’t found the net for City in the League yet this season, nor did he do so last year. He could be upgraded rather easily.

The more surprising issue out wide, is that Raheem Sterling hasn’t performed that well either. Remember, his hat trick came while playing centrally, not when occupying his normal wide spot. His Whoscored.com rating on the wing is actually below 7. This rates his play even below Navas’ at that spot. Obviously he’s not coming out of the lineup though.

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The other spot where City could stand strengthening is to bring in another striker. With Aguero out, Wilfried Bony has been forced to play every week. It’s expected that the Argentine talisman will be back in a couple of months, but what if he’s not? They’d be well served to add another option to at least provide Bony with some cover.

Man City is blessed with talent up and down the squad and truthfully, adding another attacking player does feel a bit like a luxury. Still, what good is all that money if you can’t spend it?

What They Should Sell: Despite the massive quality in the side, I can’t see them letting many players go in January. Navas could be a goner with little concern, but other than the Spaniard I think everyone else stays put unless they receive a silly offer. Remember, City is one of the oldest squads in the Premier League and they’re competing in quite a few competitions. They will need cover and depth to safeguard themselves against Father Time.

What They Will Do: Manchester City will, as always, be aggressive in the January window. I’d tip them to add a striker, a wide man and probably another defensive midfielder as well. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see them go after some young prospects to start to integrate into the team. They’ve got a lot of talent, but also a lot of age. They’d be well served to augment that experience with some fresh legs.