Does Manchester City even need a player like Raheem Sterling?

Published: July 22, 2015

I believe that Sterling holds the potential to become one of the most brilliant football players of all time. PHOTO: REUTERS

Since the Abu Dhabi group has taken over the Blues, Manchester City invested heavily on transfers this season, estimated to be more than £500 million. This heavy investment, unfortunately, continuously inflicted loss on the club’s balance sheet and brought the wart of UEFA, who imposed a fine of £50 million  and reduced the number of squad players from 25 to 21 in all European competitions.

Although invested heavily in the transfer market, the Blues haven’t performed well in the European Champions League and has managed to win only two UEFA titles since the takeover of oil-rich owner Khaldoon al- Mubarak in 2008.

Khaldoon Al- Mubarak. Photo: Reuters

Once again, the buying power of oil-rich Sheikhs recently ended a transfer saga with Liverpool and Manchester City agreeing on the transfer fee of young English winger, Raheem Sterling. According to media reports, the transfer fee is estimated to be around £44 million, which would rise up to £49 million, based on the performance of the player and the club in different competitions.

Raheem Sterling. Photo: AFP

However, fans and critics are questioning the transfer fee paid for the 20-year-old player who is yet to win a trophy. Keeping his transfer fee in mind, critics are questioning if City even needs a player like Sterling? Are Sterling and Man City even the perfect fit? Has Manuel Pellegrini signed Sterling because he meets his future goals? Or is it just a decision made by the ambitious City owner who wants to sign high-rated players?

Manuel Pellegrini. Photo: Reuters

If one were to look at Man City’s transfer history, we have seen the club signing players without any prior planning. In summer 2009, City signed Paraguayan forward Roque Santa Cruz from Blackburn Rovers for £17.5 million, yet he only played a total of 20 matches for them. He was loaned out to different clubs, and during his 2012-2013 loan spell at Malaga, he played in the Champions League and helped them reach the quarter-finals of UEFA.

Roque Santa Cruz. Photo: Reuters

One year later, the Blues signed the 22-year-old German defender Jerome Boateng from Bundesliga outfit HSV for £10.4 million, but the young German only managed to don the blue jersey 16 times and was sold to German giants Bayern Munich the following season, where he helped Bayern in winning tremble, Champions League German title and the German Cup.

Jerome Boateng. Photo: Reuters

Another example is the talented English mid-field player Jack Rodwell, who transferred from Everton in 2012 for the fee of £12 million; he only played 16 matches for the club and was sold to Sunderland at the end of the 2013-2014 campaign.

Jack Rodwell. Photo: Reuters

Therefore, as a football fan, I’d be extremely disappointed if Sterling’s transfer to City delays his personal growth, as I believe that he holds the potential to become one of the most brilliant football players of all time.

Shuja Haider

Shuja Haider

The author is a student of media arts at Karachi University. Interests include literature, film, international affairs, issues related to students and an Arsenal fan since childhood.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.