French journalist Pierre Menes was hugely critical of Eliaquim Mangala after France’s 2-1 win over Serbia, and claims the Manchester City man is considerably worse than our own Laurent Koscielny, as reported by French publication Canal+.
Koscielny was a relative unknown when he arrived at Arsenal, and there were more than a few people questioning Arsene Wenger’s transfer policy based on his early performances. He took a little while to settle in the Premier League – giving away a number of penalties, scoring a handful of own goals, and getting several red cards – but he has quickly blossomed into one of the league’s finest centre-backs.
Mangala on the other hand, was making waves with Porto, and Manchester City had to spend £42m (via The Guardian) to bring him to the Premier League. You’d argue that he hasn’t had long to adapt to the English game, but after spending so much on a player, you expect results.
Menes was clearly exasperated by Mangala’s performance against Serbia, and didn’t hold back in his post match commentary.
“I can’t. I’m done. I just can’t do it. He positions himself badly, he’s often caught on his heels and has problems when it comes to turning around quickly,” he wrote (via Canal+).
“It isn’t convincing at all and he was considerably worse than Koscielny against Portugal on Friday.”
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While it’s hard to excuse Arsene Wenger for his inactivity in the transfer market, these kinds of big money failures do go some way towards exonerating him. The manager hasn’t always got his transfers right, but we are yet to see a marquee signing who truly flopped – Andrei Arshavin and Jose Antonio Reyes being the only potential candidates, and even they started brightly.
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We all want to see new arrivals at the club, but it’s nice to be one of the few top clubs who don’t waste money and buy for the sake of buying – consequently being left with a Mangala.