Sergi Canos and the loneliness of the unwanted footballer
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
'Oh, what happened to you ... Sergi Canos.'
The one-time brilliant young winger (as he was thought of by many City fans when he wasn't actually getting a look-in) isn't the only player to have been disappointingly absent from starting line-ups.
It's fair to say you don't get every signing right, and Canos isn't an isolated story. The fact that his name has been mentioned in despatches through the January transfer window suggests the cord between manager and player was broken some time ago. He was tried and not quite trusted, tried again, and still found wanting.
Canos, 19, was signed from Liverpool for £2.5m last July, having done what turns out to be the most ill-advised U-turn as he appeared to be signing for Bristol City. He made just one Championship start, in the eye-opening 3-0 defeat at Birmingham City, and hasn't kicked a ball in anger in the league since. That's five months.
It raises questions about the scouting - why sign him if you are not sure he will be any good? – although there may be mitigation in the form of the Murphy twins, Jacob and Josh, who have both perhaps come on a little sooner and a little better than was expected.
And when the competition came, Canos wasn't up to it.
No doubt he will go on to another club and have a stormer – that's the way Sod's Law works.
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But again, he won't be the only signing that, in hindsight, confuses.
Tony Andreu came south from Hamilton with Alex Neil two years ago, but his only Championship action has been six appearances as a sub. He's scored eight in 17 starts with Dundee United this season, though, but his signing begs another question. Why?
And what about Luciano Becchio, perhaps the strangest of the all 'what happened with him?' signings.
A regular goalscorer with Leeds, he came to City four years ago when Steve Morison went the other way – and did nothing. Not that he got much of a chance under Chris Hughton. It was a happy release when he was allowed to leave at the end of the 2015-15 season.
Es un viejo juego divertido, as they say in Spain.