NAST BLAST FORCES CITY TO SHUFFLE BACK FOUR
MANCHESTER CITY have been rocked by news that Matija Nastasic has been ruled out for six weeks.
City’s key Serbian defender will miss the first month of the campaign with ankle ligament damage suffered in pre-season.
The 20-year-old is likely to be absent from the opening four Premier League games with the injury picked up in the friendly against Sunderland in Hong Kong.
Former Fiorentina centre-back Nastasic was carried off on a stretcher in last month’s Asia Cup final, and his loss is a blow to new boss Manuel Pellegrini’s plans.
But it could open the door to a recall for England defender Joleon Lescott to rekindle his title-winning defensive duo with City skipper Vincent Kompany.
There was brighter injury news for City with Sergio Aguero set to return to training by the end of the week.
The Argentinian striker has yet to feature in pre-season thanks to a knee injury suffered on the postseason tour of the US in May.
West Brom are confident of sealing a loan deal for Scott Sinclair this week.
The Baggies have moved to the front of the queue to land the 24-year-old winger after positive talks with City.
Sinclair more than quadrupled his £10,000-a-week salary when he joined from Swansea a year ago but his wage demands are not expected to be a stumbling block for Albion.
And they believe they can persuade Sinclair they are the place for him to revive his career after flopping at the Etihad last term.
Baggies gaffer Steve Clarke does not want his attacking recruitment drive, which has already seen Nicolas Anelka arrive, to end there.
He is desperate for more options up front, where he is facing up to life without goal-getter Romelu Lukaku, and also in wide areas.
Winger Jerome Thomas has left, Peter Odemwingie’s future hangs in the balance and Zoltan Gera is both injured and yet to re-sign for the Black Country outfit.
A bid for ex-Chelsea ace Salomon Kalou has been accepted by Lille – but the Ivory Coast ace, who was also wanted by West Ham, is not keen on a move.
Bad boy Odemwingie, will resist any attempt by Albion to offload him overseas or to a Championship club.
The Baggies insist they will not sell the forward on the cheap – having refused offers of £1.5milllion – but they’ll need to decide soon with the transfer deadline only four weeks away.