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Next Up - Manchester City & Brentford (Published in Sheffield Wednesday's Matchday Programme)

Updated: Feb 18, 2021


City's nouveau riche image is certainly not the same as it was back in 2008. The furore that has surrounded their recent UEFA ban has again highlighted the mammoth investment that Sheikh Mansour brought to the club.

The first flexing of City's new financial might came through the purchase of Robinho on transfer deadline day in September 2008.

The huge sum of £32.5m was enough to prise the enigmatic Brazilian from Real Madrid. City reportedly hijacked Chelsea's move for the player, Robinho even had a slip of the tongue when he commented that Chelsea came in for him with a great offer and he accepted! A reporter had to remind him that it was Manchester City who had signed him!

The deal was confirmed on the same day as the Abu Dhabi takeover was completed and City had a small window of time to make a statement and show the football world that they were now a club with the financial clout to make an impact.

But the move didn't really result in a roaring success as Robinho went on to make less than 50 appearances for the Citizens.

What it did do was to show that City were now a major player on the world stage. They needed to quickly make a statement and what better way than to make a then club record deal for a Brazilian superstar, taking his signature from a Premier League rival in the meantime?

BRENTFORD 07/03, 3:00PM

Brentford are on the brink of a new dawn as they prepare to move into the purpose-built Brentford Community Stadium.

The Bees head into their new home with an exciting possession-based and attacking style of play which has helped to transform the club into real challengers for Premier League promotion.

One player that perhaps best represents this model is Sergi Canos. Born in Nules, Spain in 1997, he was signed by Liverpool in 2013 after being released by Barcelona's academy.

An attacking midfielder who can also operate on either wing, Canos was loaned to Brentford in August 2015, initially for the first half of the season.

That loan was extended in January 2016 and by the end of the season the Spaniard had scored seven goals in 38 league appearances.

Canos was included in Liverpool's matchday squad for the final game of 2015/16 at West Brom and came off the bench with 10 minutes to go, describing the experience as "the best 10 minutes of my life".

Canos was then signed by Norwich in 2016. the move didn't work out however and in January 2017 he was transferred back to Brentford on a permanent deal as their record signing.

Other than fleeting spells on the treatment table, the midfield maestro has been a mainstay of the Brentford side, scoring 23 in nearly 150 games for the Bees.

Peter Jones




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