Report in The Sun that suggested Manchester City are planning a summer move for Barcelona full-back Daniel Alves have summoned the spectre of the club’s immensely disappointing acquisition of Maicon last season.
The latter had arrived from Inter Milan basking in a reputation as one of the world’s finest fullbacks that, in practice, had begun to curl up at the edges like yesterday’s sandwiches.
City are 3/10 to claim a victory which would keep them on course to overhaul league leaders Liverpool when they entertain Southampton at the Etihad in their next outing.
Like his compatriot and Selecao understudy Maicon, Alves will be the wrong side of 30 upon his mooted arrival at City, a club he recently professed to never having heard of five years ago.
However, unlike the aforementioned disappointment, he would arrive having spent the previous campaign as a virtual ever-present in a side that was still in with a chance of winning three trophies as of the beginning of the season’s penultimate month.
Maicon had suffered several injuries in the seasons following Inter’s treble-winning campaign of 2009/10, leading BBC writer James Horncastle to suggest his best years were behind him at the time he joined the Citizens.
His reputation had previously taken a bruising when he was destroyed by Gareth Bale in a 2010 Champions League group game.
Alves on the other hand reminded Manuel Pellegerini that he remains a fearsome competitor in Europe’s blue-riband competition, bagging home and away as Barca dumped City out of the tournament in the round of 16.
That brace means he’s outscored all bar Lionel Messi and compatriot Neymar for the Blaugrana in the Champions League yet he can be backed at a tasty 7/1 to notch against quarter-final foes Atletico Madrid.
Los Colchoneros just happened to be the most frequent victims of former Sevilla man’s scoring exploits in European football.