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Mancini set for City revamp

14 May 2010 09:12:27

Manchester City are set to shed up to 16 players as they prepare for a summer revamp. Blues boss Roberto Mancini met club owner Sheikh Mansour for the first time on Wednesday after flying to Abu Dhabi for a summit meeting. But the full scope of the cull will not become clear until City have completed their incoming transfers. The Blues are close to completing a deal with £11m Hamburg defender Jerome Boateng, are pondering a bid for Benfica utility man David Luiz, and are preparing one big marquee signing - thought to be Liverpool's Spanish ace Fernando Torres. They also have irons in the fire for two young Serie A stars, one of them likely to be Napoli playmaker Marek Hamsik. Already earmarked for departure are strikers Benjani, Valeri Bojinov, Felipe Caicedo, Kelvin Etuhu and Jo, who all spent all or part of last season out on loan. They are likely to be joined by Martin Petrov, who missed the last three months of the season with a knee injury after enjoying a brief revival in fortune under new Mancini. Academy products Stevie Ireland, Nedum Onuoha, Micah Richards, Vladimir Weiss and Shaun Wright-Phillips have all come under scrutiny during the Abu Dhabi meeting, while the futures of Craig Bellamy, Robinho, Sylvinho and Patrick Vieira have also been discussed. Other clubs are already circling the possible leavers, with Ireland, Onuoha and Richards attracting plenty of interest. Aston Villa and Sunderland have designs on Onuoha, Spurs and Everton fancy Richards, and Arsenal are showing an interest in Ireland. But City are wary of allowing home-grown products to go too easily, because they see the Academy as a key part of the club's structure. There is also a fear that releasing players of that potential could come back to hurt them, and that will also enter their thinking on Weiss, whose exploits with Slovakia in the World Cup finals will be closely monitored. Dunne deal The Blues were bitten this year with Richard Dunne - although hardly a youngster - having a fine season at his new club Aston Villa. And they also lived to regret the decision to allow Joe Hart out on loan for a season at Birmingham, as they were unable to recall him when Shay Given dislocated his shoulder at a crucial phase of the season. They are conscious of the fact that they need to be even more circumspect next season, with a big increase in fixtures should they qualify for the group stage of the Europa League, which means a need for a larger first-team squad. Bellamy is another player with a question mark over his head, and who is also attracting the interest of Tottenham. He will also be targeted by Cardiff City, his hometown club, if they can beat Blackpool in next week's Championship play-off final at Wembley. He has already clashed with Mancini over the best way to handle his long-standing knee problems, and while Mancini says it is a "farce" to suggest he has a problem with the player, Bellamy is not enthusiastic about City's management team. Wright-Phillips is another whose future is in limbo. He asked for a pay rise to bring him into line with players who joined on inflated salaries after the Abu Dhabi takeover, but he turned down an improved offer. Sylvinho and Vieira may be offered new one-year deals. Mancini has returned to Italy to spend some time with his family, who are due to move to Manchester in September. Chief executive Garry Cook, chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak and football administrator Brian Marwood are still in the emirate, thrashing out details of the Blues' strategy for the summer and beyond. How should City reshape their squad? Have your say. | Submit Comments| Comments (164)| PrintWhat's this? Emaildel.icio.usDiggredditFacebookStumbleUponNewsvineGoogle BookmarksNetscapeTechnoratiWindows LiveYahoo! MyWebMa.gnolia


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