Six years after toppling Bayern Munich and winning the Bundesliga with VfL Wolfsburg, Bosnian forward Edin Dzeko looks to have completed another switch, this time swapping Manchester for Rome.
Since arriving at the Etihad stadium in January 2011, Dzeko has made 74 appearances as a starter and 56 as a substitute for Manchester City, stats he probably didn't expect upon arrival.
When Dzeko was at Wolfsburg he was playing in a two-forward system, paired with Brazilian striker Grafite, who had joined from Le Mans in 2007. In their first season together, 2007/08, they combined for nineteen goals in the Bundesliga, a decent return considering it was their first season in the same team.
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The second season was an amazing success; they managed a record-breaking 54 goal tally between the two of them.
However impressive that statistic may be, there was one huge difference in the Wolfsburg side in 2008/09; he goes by the name of Zvjezdan Misimovic.
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Felix Magath signed Misimovic from Nurnberg in the summer of 2008, and played him behind the two strikers as a conventional No.10. It worked extraordinarily well, with Misimovic registering twenty assists in 2008/09.
He was an expert passer, and he made his strikers play better by linking the midfield to the attack very well, which brings me to Dzeko’s career at City. While at the Etihad Dzeko has always been competing with at least three other forwards.
Carlos Tevez, Mario Balotelli, and Sergio Aguero were all at the club in Dzeko’s first full season. In the campaigns since then, every time a striker has left, a new striker has come in to replace him. Even if Manuel Pellegrini were playing two strikers up front – which does happen occasionally – Dzeko would never be their first choice forward – Aguero is simply too important.
Consistency is what Dzeko needs if he is to be that same goalscorer that he was with Wolfsburg. In 2013/14, he played the most minutes of any season that he has been in the Premier League. Unsurprisingly, he scored the most goals of the four seasons he has played.
He is not a striker who needs to be given the freedom to dribble, or a lot of space to roam in to play in his teammates – that is not his style. Instead he functions very well on the counter attack, which is how Pellegrini likes to play.
Roma need to give him a chance
In my opinion he has simply been used as a substitute far too many times. If there is anything Roma can learn from Dzeko’s up and down career in England, it is that he deserves a chance in the first XI from the get-go.
Seydou Doumbia, a winter arrival from CSKA Moscow, could form a very interesting partnership up front with Dzeko. Doumbia has a ton of pace, and like his new teammate, loves to counter at speed.
City fans, will Pellegrini regret letting Dzeko go? Let us know what you think in the comments box below.