Friday, January 02, 2009

Bridge move edges closer

CITY are closing in on left back Wayne Bridge with the Chelsea man expected in Manchester for talks.

Blues boss Hughes has made the 28-year-old his top target, and Bridge would be able to play in the UEFA Cup if the move went through. The deal is likely to cost City around £11m.

Bridge's arrival would certainly create a log jam at left back, joining incumbents Garrido, Ball and Glauber yet it is an area that does need strengthening.

I've slightly mixed feelings about Bridge as he hasn't overly impressed when I have seen him, yet is an upgrade over what we have. Given his relatively still young age and a regular spot week in week out, the hope is he can be a strong addition for us.

It is certain that Glauber will not be at the come next season, but what of Garrido and Ball? Garrido has been mostly impressive this season, adding strength and some tactical nous since the arrival of Hughes (two areas he was lacking last season) and is young enough to continue improving. Given the number of games we face he will also see enough action.

As for Ball, it does seem he has regressed this season - making his inclusion ahead of Garrido for the most part surprising. He appears solid enough and largely dependable, yet these are qualities that are no longer enough. He is too one-paced and one-dimensional for me and lacks the ability of Bridge (and to a lesser extent Garrido) to augment the attack.

The move for Bridge has been reported widely across the press over the past couple of days, and it would be surprising now if a deal wasn't completed over the weekend or early next week in time for a debut at Portsmouth.

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