Manchester City assistant David Platt has been open and honest about Scott Sinclair's lack of playing time at the club by speaking to the press. Well almost.
The winger has struggled for starts since arriving at the club from Swansea in the summer, and Platt acknowledges the winger is in a similar position to Adam Johnson was.
Where he falls down, is where he alludes to a transfer and says: "The manager’s door is always open to any player if they want to go and play like Adam Johnson did. But he seems happy."
The point being, Sinclair couldn't move on in January - Even if he wanted to.
The reason is down to FIFA and their stringent player registration rules. The same rules that quickly forced the Daily Mail to backtrack on a story linking Andy Carroll with a January transfer to Spurs last month.
The FIFA regulations on Status and Transfer of Players, Chapter 3: Registration of Players, Article 5.3 states:
‘Players may be registered for a maximum of three clubs during the period from 1 July until 30 June of the following year. During this period, the player is only eligible to play in official matches for two clubs’. (There is one exception relating to moving to another country whose season partly overlaps with the Premier League but that is unlikely to take relevance here)
Sinclair may have made a disappointing two Premier League starts so far, and been in the news more lately thanks to the Jungle exploits of his celebrity girlfriend, but he has to be patient, as Platt later suggests.
Because right now there is no way out, unless its to the Russian league - Sinclair won't be appearing in January's edition of 'I'm a City Player Get Me Out of Here'. It's time to get his head down and make an impression whenever he gets the chance to do so - and who knows that could be tonight away to Wigan.
Would you give Sinclair a start against Wigan?
image: © Ronnie Macdonald