How to solve a problem like goalkeepers for Manchester City

Manchester City appear set to be granted permission by the Premier League to make an emergency loan move. The said move will be allowed on the premise that the player brought in is a goalkeeper from another Premier League.

Martin Fulop seems to be the most likely option and quotes attributed to the Sunderland goalkeeper suggest that he reciprocates such rumours: “If the news is true then I’d go there happily and I would be hungry to play for Manchester City. This is an enormoushonour for me that my name has been linked with a club which has such a great history.” This situation came to a head after first choice ‘keeper Shay Given dislocated his shoulder whilst saving a relatively innocuous shot against Arsenal last weekend. Shay, along with second choice ‘keeper Stuart Taylor and fourth choice shot stopper David Gonzalez, now finds himself on the sidelines leaving third choice Gunnar Nielsen as City’s first option. Under Premier League rules, Manchester City are within their rights to make such an appeal.

The rules loosely state that, should a team find its first and second choice goalkeepers injured, then an emergency loan may take place. This is not the first team such an event has occurred. In 2005 Aston Villa signed Gabor Kiraly on a short deal after Thomas Sorenson and ironically, Stuart Taylor were deemed unavailable for selection. So, all in all, everything appears to be in order. City are as far as is known, not doing anything untoward and should be allowed to sign another goalkeeper on loan till the season finishes. Will the fans of Tottenham Hotspurs, Aston Villa and Liverpool be delighted with such a ruling? The short answer is no. Whilst the ruling is fair, there is an argument that City are simply being picky and that that they should have to make do with what they have. A squad is a squad for a reason. When first or indeed second choice players are injured, reserves have to come in place. That happens in every other position on the field so why should the one between the posts be any different? Was this simply a misjudgement on City’s behalf? Taylor has been injured on and off for quite some time now and he was most certainly injured throughout the January transfer window.

Should they have compensated for the possibility that Shay Given may get injured? Or, have the Eastlands club found themselves caught short and desperate need of a helping hand? After all, Nielsen is an international player. Worryingly, the man that seems most likely to join conceded seven goals in his last outing. For City, the goalkeeping situation needs to be resolved quickly as two vital clashes against Aston Villa and Tottenham quickly ensue in the coming weeks.

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