Samir Nasri set to sign new five-year deal at Manchester City
at Manchester City when the Frenchman finishes his
holiday, with the club hopeful that Joe Hart, Edin
Dzeko, and Aleksandar Kolarov will follow suit by
signing contract extensions after the World Cup.
While City would also like James Milner to agree fresh
terms, the midfielder is reluctant to do so as he wants
to leave to play more regular first-team football.
As Nasri is not in Didier Deschamps’s France squad for
the World Cup, which starts next week in Brazil, he is
expected to be the first to commit himself to City,
following the 26-year-old’s fine season in the club’s
Nasri, who has two years left on his current deal,
scored seven goals in 29 league starts including a vital
late equaliser in the 2-2 draw with Sunderland on 16
April and the opener in the 2-0 win over West Ham
United on the final day that clinched City a second
championship in three years.
His decision to tie himself to City signals his
contentment at the club and represents a turnaround
from a year ago when Nasri struggled under Roberto
Mancini, the former manager, and at one point
appeared likely to leave. His unhappiness playing for
Manuel Pellegrini’s predecessor featured several spats
which included the Italian stating he wanted to punch
Nasri for some of his performances during the
That troubled campaign had followed a well-
documented argument with a French journalist
following France’s exit from Euro 2012. However,
after a summer of soul-searching in last summer and
the calming influence of Pellegrini’s management,
Nasri, who joined from Arsenal in August 2011 in a
£24m deal, admitted he had matured.
When City won the title last month, he stated the
difference between Mancini and Pellegrini as: “The
atmosphere in the dressing room. We’ve been friends
this year. There are no egos. It was a pleasure to
work with him.”
City also want to reward Hart for an impressive
second half of the season after he was dropped in
late October for a series of howlers. The goalkeeper,
who will start the World Cup as the England No1, also
has two years left on his contract and bounced back
from being demoted to have a fine campaign when
reinstated by Pellegrini on 21 December for the 4-2
win at Fulham.
As with Nasri, who can expect to be given improved
terms on his current wags of a round £170,000 a
week, Hart’s £90,000-a-week salary will be increased.
Kolarov, who joined City from Lazio for £19m in
summer 2010 and earns £100,000, and Dzeko, a £27m
buy from Wolfsburg January 2011 whose salary is
£150,000 a week, each have just a year left. But
after both played vital parts in City’s successful
season – the club also won the Capital One Cup – they
will be offered fresh terms.
Milner’s situation is less clear-cut following Uefa’s
financial fair play sanctions. Milner is unhappy at the
lack of first-team opportunities afforded him by
Pellegrini having started only 12 league games and
made 19 substitute appearances.
While he wants to leave, Milner may be retained by
the club because of Uefa’s ruling that City can have
only 21 players in their Champions League squad, with
the midfielder potentially required to fill one of the
homegrown berths. If he decides against agreeing a
new deal and holds out for a transfer, City would be
prepared to block the move and let him run down his
contract for the final 12 months.
City have made their latest move in a long-term
strategy to tackle FFP regulations by recruiting Steve
Torpey and Darren Hughes from Liverpool, two youth
team coaches, after appointing Rodolfo Borrell as the
club’s global technical director in March. Borrell had
been the head of the academy coaching at the
Merseyside club before being sacked last autumn.
Liverpool had not wanted to lose either Torpey or
Hughes with each having been considered committed
to the club for the foreseeable future. While Torpey
and Hughes coached up to under-14 level, Borrell was
aware of their respective abilities from his time at
With FFP increasing the need for more homegrown
players, Torpey and Hughes’ knowledge and contacts
should aid Borrell’s drive to ensure a greater number
of high-quality footballers are developed at City.
When at Liverpool, Raheem Sterling and Jon Flanagan
were developed under Borrell, and he is also credited
for producing Cesc Fábregas and Lionel Messi when
previously at Barcelona.
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