Gareth Barry cannot be allowed to walk away from City for free

Gareth Barry At Villa

Gareth Barry is available on a free transfer next summer from Manchester City, unless they sort out a new deal for him.

Gareth Barry is one of the most underrated players at Manchester City. He has the ability to control the pace and tempo through the midfield of the side yet his current contract expires in the summer of 2014.

If the club doesn’t want to see him leave and join a main rival for free, then they need to make his future a priority because there will be plenty of clubs queuing up for him in the very near future.

The maturity and quality he showed in the FA Cup semi-final win over Chelsea, goes a long way to showing he can play a big role in the current City team regardless of the fact he’s not as glitz and glamour as some of the other players.

His presence allows Yaya Toure to get forward, utilising his pace and power to burst through teams which he has done so successfully ever since he first joined the club.

He’s also the best the club has in terms of linking the various sections of the team. He picks the ball up from the midfield and he’s good enough to play simple balls through to the attack as well as finding more creative passes into space.

He reads the game very well which allows him to stay on the same page as the more creative players and it also enables him to play passes and make moves to break up play, before certain movements have happened.

He doesn’t do anything stupid and he doesn’t try to be a hero when he doesn’t have to be. Chelsea struggled to get to grips with him because every time he got the ball or found himself in a good position, he did something simple which aided a teammate.

Roberto Mancini has already hinted that the club will be offering him a new contract but it has to be a pressing concern and something the club have to address quickly.

Barry is now 32-years-old and the next contract he signs could well be the final contract of his career so he will be keen to get it sorted out quickly.

The problem City have in delaying contract negotiations and getting a new deal settled is that another team can come in, with a tempting fee and a tempting offer which may be too good for City to turn down.

If that happens they are losing one of their most consistent players, who can still play a variety of roles across the middle of the team.

There is a definite air that he gets overlooked because of the shadows cast by bigger and higher profile players in the team but that never seems to have been a problem for his personality.

If City don’t get him tied down on a new, long term deal then he’ll walk away for free when his contract runs down and that’s not something the club should allow to happen. Fortunately it’s an issue Roberto Mancini seems to be aware of.

How long should City offer him?

image: © dalli

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