The most tedious summer transfer saga since Xabi Alonso threw two fingers in the general direction of Liverpool and Gareth Barry wound up going to Manchester City anyway, ended this week with the transfer of James Milner to Manchester City from Aston Villa in exchange for Stephen Ireland and £18m going the other direction.
A total of £26m for a player who cost £12m two years ago and will likely find himself surplus to Manchester City’s needs very quickly. Much like the aforementioned Gareth Barry, who came from Villa last summer supposedly to play Champions League Football – which he wasn’t achieving at last glance.
Ireland isn’t bitter about it at all:
“James Milner has obviously seen the attraction of going to Manchester City. He sees players going there and he wants to be one of those so-called superstars and nail down his place in the England team, become more established and play 90 minutes for his country.
“I guess he must think the grass is greener on the other side. He’s going to get a shock soon. I can understand why he’s gone there but I can tell him that I’m very happy to leave there and come to Villa.”
Right, so who’s gonna come out on top with this deal? City or Villa?