MANCHESTER CITY COULD BENEFIT FROM NEW YORK SIGNINGS
Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard has announced his departure from Chelsea after 13 years at the London club.
Lampard, who will turn 36 during the World Cup in Brazil, has been linked with a lucrative move to New York City FC where he could join Spain striker David Villa who became New York City’s ‘first player’ after signing a three year deal.
Villa, 32, had earlier announced his departure from the La Liga Champions, Atletico Madrid, claiming he would be embarking on a new challenge following an ‘irresistible opportunity’.
New York City FC Sporting Director Claudio Reyna said: “David is the perfect first signing for New York City FC.”
It’s thought that Lampard could be tempted by a similar deal to join the newly created club in America.
Villa will wear the number 7 shirt for his new club but would not be able to play for NYCFC until the beginning of the new MLS season in March 2015.
It has been rumoured that Villa could be farmed out to another club in Europe to gain match fitness prior to the start of the new MLS season.
Manchester City insiders have denied that the Etihad club could welcome Villa into the fold for a few months next season, however.
It’s also been denied that Lampard could be farmed out to Manchester City if he chooses to follow Villa to America next year too.
Lampard could help City fill one of their ‘home-grown’ slots in next season’s Champions League squad which has been reduced to 21.
There have been rumours that City would prefer instead to bid for the services of Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas after Barcelona let it be known that the former Arsenal midfielder could be available for £30m.
City are well catered for in midfield with a bid for Porto’s £15m defensive midfielder Fernando apparently at an advanced stage but there remains a slight question mark over the future of talismanic midfielder Yaya Toure whose recent birthday cake fiasco – in which it was claimed that Toure had not received enough respect from the City hierarchy – has dented his reputation among City fans.
Fabregas, 27, who was originally signed by Arsenal as a 16-year old, qualifies as a home grown player which is of vital importance to City who seem set to allow a clutch of English players to leave the club after the summer.
Arsenal have first refusal for any transfer bid involving Fabregas as long as they match the fee but it’s believed that Arsene Wenger has more pressing needs in the Gunners’ squad for next season than another attacking midfielder and will decline the option of matching any incoming bid.
City could have a fight on their hands to win the services of Fabregas, however, as Jose Mourinho could lure the Spaniard back to London if he considers Fabregas to be the perfect partner for Nemanja Matic in their midfield.
Manchester United have ruled themselves out of contention for Fabregas after Louis Van Gaal was made manager. Last summer two bids were turned down by Barcelona while David Moyes was in charge at Old Trafford.