Wilfried Bony has completed his transfer to Manchester City, as expected, and has immediately spoken of his desire to win the UEFA Champions League.
The Blues already have Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko and Stevan Jovetic as attacking options in their first team squad, yet all three have suffered injuries this season and there was a time recently when none where available. Further to this, the latter has yet to really impress following his arrival in the summer of 2013, and Manuel Pellegrini was keen to sign another striker this month.
Bony was heavily linked with a move to the Etihad Stadium ahead of the January window opening, due to his fine record since joining Swansea City. The Ivory Coast international, who is currently away for the African Cup of Nations, has scored 26 goals in 54 Premier League matches for the Liberty Stadium club, and he opened the scoring against City in a 2-1 defeat back in November.
Both clubs have made no secret that talks have been ongoing regarding a transfer, and it has now been confirmed that the 26-year-old has joined the reigning champions for an initial fee of £25million which could rise to £28million. Bony has in the past spoken of his desire to pit his qualities in the Champions League, and he believes he can now go on and win the tournament this season.
“I think it’s a great decision for me – Manchester City is in the Champions League,” he told the official club website. “You remember at the end of last season I said that if I want to move it will be to a team in the competition because it’s a great tournament that I really want to play in and one that I want to win. City is a big club with great players with a lot of experience; I believe we can do it.”
Bony, who will wear the number 14 shirt for Pellegrini’s outfit, will make his debut when he returns from international duty in Equatorial Guinea. Ivory Coast have been placed alongside Cameroon, Guinea and Mali in Group D which will run until 28 January. The quarter-final, should they progress, will be played on 1 February, with the last-four on 4 and 5 February and the final 8 February.
The striker will certainly be available for the first leg of City’s last-16 Champions League clash at home to Barcelona on 24 February. One player who will not be in contention for the English champions against the Spanish giants is Matija Nastasic, who has joined German side Schalke on loan for the remainder of the season with the view to a permanent switch at £10million in the summer.
The Serbian international made a big impression for the Blues when he joined in the summer of 2012, making 21 league appearances in his debut season. He made another 13 last term, but this time round he has slipped further down the pecking order following Eliaquim Mangala’s arrival. The 21-year-old said: “At the moment it’s a loan, and at the end of the season we’ll see what happens. I already spoke with (Roberto Di Matteo) and he told me about the club and the team.”
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