Former Arsenal midfielder Patrick Vieira has stated his intent to find a first team spot with Manchester City.
The 34-year-old midfielder was part of Arsenal’s famous “Invincibles” season, where Arsenal didn’t lose a single league match in the 2003/04 season when Arsenal lifted the premier league trophy for the second time. Patrick Vieira was a first team starter in that season and is still considered to be one of the best midfielders of his time.
However, he joined Manchester City from Inter Milan last season and has made 15 appearances in all competitions in what would be his second season at the Eastlands. Vieira has managed just one league appearance in the season so far and scored the equalizer against Blackburn Rovers when he came on as a 65th minute substitute.
With so much stardom in Manchester City, it’s hard to find a spot for many of the players. Yet, Vieira can be expected to start against his former club Juventus in the Europa league today as he was forced to watch his teammates defeat Chelsea from the substitute bench. Vieira has won various medals in his illustrious career, which includes 4 Serie A medals with Inter Milan, the premier league titles with Arsenal and a World winner’s medal while playing for France in the 1998 World Cup. The midfielder however is now frustrated by the lack of game minutes and is aiming to push himself to the limit to get a nod from the manager.
“I have been happy with my form since start of season. It is difficult when you play one game every month. I need to work harder than everyone else to show the manager can count on me. I just want to enjoy myself. I am involved in a fantastic challenge with this club and really want to be part of it,” claimed the 34-year-old Frenchman.
Like Manchester City, their opponents Juventus are also in a time of transition but remain favourites to progress through to the next round ahead of unknown Lech Poznan and Strasbourg. Vieira has backed Manchester City to emerge victorious in their bout with his former club, with whom he spent a season before turning to Inter Milan. The player claimed that currently Juve is going through a rough patch and is not the side it was in the past few years. Still, the Italian giants remain a competitive side and anything can be expected. The player added that City players wouldn’t be given time and space on the ball by Juve but there are players in the City camp who can also create a lot of problems for the Italians. Vieira outlined that the strength of Manchester City is its star studded squad and would now have to be competitive in every competition they enter.
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini is well aware of the crucial week, having faced three top sides. City faced Chelsea over the weekend and will be facing Juventus today and Newcastle United over the weekend. The manager claimed that he’s working hard with his players to improve and like Juventus, they had the same targets. All the outfit needs is time and patience opined the manager. Mancini stated that it is important for City to have fit players for the entire season. Mancini outlined that it would be an important week for the side and having tough fixtures with Chelsea, Juventus and Newcastle in the same week is no easy task.