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Manchester City must spend Balotelli cash on a defender not a striker

Manchester City will be expected to splash the Balotelli cash on a direct replacement, but we argue it would be better off spent elsewhere.

So farewell Mario. Good luck in Italy, one suspects you may need it.

For City, while frustrating to lose a player with so much potential - his departure does present about an opportunity.

Now City have a space in attack, one you suspect Roberto Mancini would have been able to fill with Robin van Persie back in the summer had he been so decisive back then.

So with under 48 hours left of the transfer window, can City sign a big name striker to fire them to the title?

Naturally the rumour mill is about to go into overdrive, but the club should consider spending it elsewhere on their squad.

Of course a big name striker would give them a lift, and after the 0-0 draw with QPR there is a simple logic that a new striker will help them win such games.

Yet the game was a rarity- City seldom struggle for goals, and have Edin Dzeko, Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez at their disposal. They also have John Guidetti chomping at the bit awaiting a chance, along with several talented midfielders like Silva, Nasri and Toure all capable of chipping in with the goals.

City's main loss against QPR was the lack of Yaya Toure to drive them forward, so clearly he cannot come back from the African Nations Cup quickly enough.

City will also face far more potent opposition than QPR from an attacking point of view - and would do well to invest the money in a central defender.

Vincent Kompany is out injured along with Matija Nastasic - and with Kolo Toure also off in South Africa, Joleon Lescott is their only fit central defender.

They got away with it last night, but face Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez of Liverpool in their next match, and may not be so fortunate. Having dropped points last night as they looked to close the gap on United, they can't afford to do the same again at the weekend.

Yet the way their injuries are piling up, it won't be at all surprising to see them drop more. City had the same issue last season when Kompany got injured, and without the versatile Micah Richards the problems are compounded.

Buying a centre-back now won't be a short-term fix either. Kolo Toure is likely to move on in the summer, while Mancini has made clear that Joleon Lescott is unlikely to feature long-term for the club at the back, dropping him for Nastasic when all are available.

There isn't much time ticking left, but City certainly have the cash to spend to avoid a building defensive problem which could prove deciding for their title aspirations.

Do you agree City should spend the money on a defender? Who should they bring in?

image: © drabikpany

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