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FrankenCity: The Heart of Blue

PASSION: Zabaleta has given his all for City during his time in Manchester

PASSION: Zabaleta has given his all for City during his time in Manchester

Day four of our monster feature and it’s time to add a heart to the ultimate City player.

We’re looking for the player you would trust to give their all in the famous sky blue shirt no matter the circumstances. Who bleeds blue for the club?

Take a look through these ultimate warriors and cast your vote on the @ManCity Twitter poll.

Pablo Zabaleta

When the Argentine arrived in Manchester in 2008 he could have no idea of the cult hero status he would enjoy at the Etihad Stadium.

During his eight seasons with the club he has played a vital role in one of the most trophy-laden periods the club has ever known.

The right-back’s willingness to put his body on the line for his team means he often ends matches bandaged up and his slide tackles are often cheered as loud as a goal.

As you will often hear the South Stand of the Etihad sing…‘He’s harder than Jaap Stam!’

 

Richard Dunne

Winning Player of the Year four times in a row shows the passion of the former Republic of Ireland defender.

The tough-tackling centre back wore sky blue for nine years from 2000-2009, spanning the club’s return to and consolidation in the Premier League.

Dunne’s solid tackling and commanding presence meant he was the captain of the side under several managerial reigns, making 253 Premier League appearances.

After leaving the Blues, Dunne continued his Premier League career with both Aston Villa and Queens Park Rangers and is now enjoying his retirement in France.

 

Bert Trautmann

The hero of perhaps the most told story in City’s history, Trautmann’s bravery has become folklore.

The Blues took the opportunity to sign the German prisoner-of-war following the Second World War and the decision proved to be an inspired one.

It was the 1956 FA Cup Final that really earned Trautmann his place on this list. With City leading Birmingham City 3-1, the goalkeeper was involved in a collision that looked likely to end his match fifteen minutes before the final whistle.

Trautmann insisted on continuing and saw out the match without another goal conceded. It was later revealed that he had broken a bone in his neck during that collision.

 

Mike Doyle

Over 550 appearances and thirteen years as the rock in City’s defence made Doyle an idol for a generation of City fans.

Another toughtackling defender to add to the list, Doyle has often been referred to as City’s ‘hardest ever player’.

The fact he appeared in league, cup and European success for the club has also gone a long way to ensure City fans remember him fondly.

As the title of his autobiography demonstrated, the late defender truly did have ‘Blue Blood’.

 

Honourable mentions

Joe Hart

No pun intended! Hart is one of the greatest goalkeepers in City’s history, proudly guarding the Etihad goal through all of the club’s recent success.

 

Nigel de Jong

The Dutch midfielder is the classic destroyer…stoutly protecting the defence under Mark Hughes’ and Roberto Mancini’s reign.

 

Paul Dickov

It was Dickov’s tenacity that earned City a penalty shootout in the famous play-off final victory of 1999.

 

Alan Oakes

The club’s record appearance holder was known for his professionalism and consistency in the midfield throughout his 17 years and 682 appearances.

 

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