Manchester City’s £28 million move for Wilfried Bony has made them favourites for the Premier League title. Unlike Chelsea they now have four strikers of proven quality, compared to the London club’s three.
The Ivorian forward scored more league goals than anyone in the English top flight in 2014 while playing for Swansea City with 20 strikes registered to his name. When you add Bony to City’s ranks, they now possess four of the top five goal scorers in the previous calendar year.
Sergio Aguero struck 18 times for the Citizens’, while Yaya Toure and Edin Dzeko both scored 17 and 14 times respectively. Only Wayne Rooney breaks the City hegemony in the goal scoring charts, having scored 16 times.
They now have a replacement for the frequently injured Aguero and because of that City are now favourites for the title, ahead of Chelsea. The Stamford Bridge club must hope that their star signing in the summer, Diego Costa, does not get injured for an extended period of time. Loic Remy and Didier Drogba may prove able replacements, but without Costa they do not possess the quality in the forward positions that City now possess.
Manchester City’s new striker also offers them a new dimension in attack. With Bony signing they now have a strong, target man type centre forward who is equally adept at bringing midfield runners, such as Samir Nasri and David Silva, as he is at finding the back of the net.
In many ways he mirrors the way Chelsea’s Drogba played during his peak years at the club with his power and strength bringing an alternative to the nimble, quick strikers of Aguero and Stevan Jovetic. Despite Dzeko’s height, he too does not possess the power and strength that Bony will bring to City’s line up.
Bony spoke of his excitement at signing for City, admitting: “It’s a great feeling for me, it’s a big honour to be here and it’s a great challenge,” said Bony last night. As a player it’s always good to be part of one of the biggest clubs in the world and it’s a good opportunity for me to be in that situation now — I’m really proud.”
However, the Ivorian will be unavailable for the champions during January and February due to being away with Ivory Coast for the African Cup of Nations. Despite this, the impact of not having their new signing will be offset by the returning Aguero and Dzeko.