The City Summary (December 18, 2013)

City will play West Ham in the Capital One Cup semi final after tonight’s draw.

The first leg will take place at the Etihad on January 7-8 and the second leg will be at the Boleyn Ground on January 21-22.

West Ham away is one of City’s few Premier League wins on the road so far this season, but the Blues will hope to continue their blistering home form and put the tie out of reach before heading down to London.

The other semi final sees United take on Sunderland and already people are anticipating a Manchester derby at Wembley in March!

One step at a time though as neither West Ham or Sunderland will be in the mood to roll over when they are so close to a big cup final.

If just one of the two Manchester sides reaches the final, the Old Trafford derby will have to be rescheduled with it due to take place the day after the Capital One Cup final.

Pellegrini caused a lot of worry among City fans last night when he suggested Aguero could be out for 8 weeks.

We posted earlier in the same day that Aguero could be back sooner than expected, possibly as soon as the Newcastle game.

So it was no surprise we got a bit of stick when Pellegrini revealed his fears after the win over Leicester.

Well, tonight the Telegraph is reporting that the injury is not as bad as Pellegrini feared after all, and that Aguero should be available for selection before the end of January.

Maybe Pellegrini just got the maths wrong…

In less pleasing news, the Telegraph reports that Zabaleta could miss up to a month with the hamstring injury he suffered last night.

This is a desperately disappointing news with Micah Richards back on the treatment table as he is far too often.

City are thought to be considering Milner, Rodwell and Boyata for the right-back role. Milner said he’d play there if asked and knowing him, he’d do a fine job.

Just when you thought the speculation over a new goalkeeper had gone away, the Daily Mirror and some in the Spanish media come back with this one…

Representatives of Real Madrid and Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas have reportedly offered the 32-year-old to both City and Arsenal.

Casillas is Real Madrid’s “cup” goalkeeper nowadays and is stuck in the same situation as Joe Hart right now.

Pellegrini continues to resist the pressure to restore Hart to his Premier League starting 11, despite England’s number one looking more comfortable in recent cup games.

Unless or until Hart is restored to his former spot, speculation about his future and potential replacements will never go away it seems.

Manchester City v CSKA Moscow - UEFA Champions League
Russian giants Zenit St. Petersburg are the latest club to register an interest in City left-back Aleksander Kolarov, according to TMW in Italy.

Serie A sides Juventus and Inter are already known to be interested, but Kolarov has been used a lot by Pellegrini this season and unless a top-class replacement can be found in the tricky January window, there is little chance of him leaving any time soon.

Kolarov has admitted he’d love to go back to Italy some day, which has led to the predictable and misleading “Kolarov wants Italy move” headlines, when he made it clear he could be at City for a while yet.

Were he to move to Russia, he would be cup-tied for Zenit, who face Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League round of 16.

Pellegrini’s former club Málaga are interested in taking a City star on loan in January, according to ElDesmarque.

Mario Husillos has arrived as sporting director at Málaga and has good relations with City’s Txiki Begiristain, opening the door to possible loan deals.

Málaga are keen on Stevan Jovetic, John Guidetti and Jack Rodwell, with Guidetti seen as the most realistic choice.

The chances of Jovetic heading to La Liga on loan are near enough zero, with City intending to make full use him in the first team once he is available.

A lack of cover in midfield besides Garcia would also seem to rule out Rodwell, unless City dip into the transfer market next January.

Even Guidetti wouldn’t be a simple acquisition for Málaga with huge interest from elsewhere, including Betis.

Bundesliga sides Hoffenheim and Hamburg are among the many European clubs to have made recent enquiries for the Swedish striker.

Abdisalam Ibrahim has been linked with dozens of clubs in recent months and you can add a few more to the list today.

The Daily Mirror reports that Premier League side Swansea along with Championship promotion chasers QPR and Reading are keen on the Norwegian midfielder.

22-year-old Ibrahim could leave for for around £250,000 training compensation, which would be a reasonable fee keeping in mind his City contract expires next summer.

Ibrahim is always positive about City on his Twitter account and would love the chance to make it at the club, but has played no part in the first team fold since returning from a loan deal and it looks like a move would be best for him.

Another 22-year-old City midfielder is returning home from a loan deal.

Ghana international Mohammed Abu is set to return from Danish side AGF after a 3-month loan spell there.

The move, like most of Abu’s others to European clubs, doesn’t seem to have gone very well with the midfielder rarely in the AGF team.

19-year-old Dominic Oduro, another of City’s Ghanaian horde farmed out, is also on loan at AGF and has made 13 appearances this season.

What happens next with Abu isn’t clear. A few years ago he was seen as a big prospect for City, but all of his loan moves, except the ones to Strømsgodset in Norway, haven’t gone well.

City EDS midfielder Louis Hutton turned out for Leeds’ reserve team earlier today, making an appearance off the bench.

Hutton and George Swan, who is currently on loan at Sheffield Wednesday, were signed for an expensive compensation fee of £800,000 from Leeds in 2009 when they were just 14.

It was a controversial deal at the time with Leeds not wanting to lose the promising duo, but despite the expensive outlay neither look like they will break through at City.

According to Yorkshire Evening Post journalist Phil Hay, Hutton hasn’t been released by City but has been made available by the club.


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