Rob Pollard: Sergio Aguero, July 2011
The signing of Sergio Aguero sticks out in my mind as a seismic moment in the Club’s history.
Having just won the FA Cup – City’s first trophy in 35 years – and qualified for the Champions League, it was time to kick on and fight for the league title.
Aguero had proven during his time with Atletico Madrid he was one of the finest young strikers in world football. He scored 74 in 175 games in Spain and the previous year had destroyed Fulham in the UEFA Cup final with a quite brilliant display.
This was the calibre of player City needed, one who was fearless, unrelenting in his pursuit of goals and with searing pace.
It felt like a big statement. City weren’t content with their rapid progress, they wanted more, and at the end of Aguero’s first season, he scored the most famous goal in Premier League history to secure the Club’s first title in 44 years. Another title followed two years later, with two League Cups sandwiched in between.
He has bagged 169 goals in 253 games and is closing in on becoming City’s all-time leading goalscorer, needing just nine to leapfrog Eric Brook into first place.
A remarkable player and a huge signing.
David Clayton: Carlos Tevez, July 2009
There are too many players to choose from in all honesty.
But as we’ve been given a task, I’d go for Carlos Tevez.
Tevez played every game like did as a kid, fighting his way out of the tough Buenos Aires neighbourhood he grew up in.
He was a catalyst for City turning from nearly men into champions with his own fiery brand of never-say-die spirit.
It may be a cliché, but Tevez played the way every City fan imagines they would given the chance to wear the shirt – he fought with every sinew, gave everything each time he played and was a genuine pleasure to watch.
He scored every sort of goal imaginable with some world class strikes thrown in for good measure – Tevez was the complete striker – a warrior, a leader and a fantastic footballer whose 73 goals from 148 games bears testament to his contribution over four memorable seasons.
Controversial, whole-hearted, passionate and a mystery wrapped in an enigma – but what a footballer.
Caroline Oatway: Robinho, September 2008
Transfer Deadline Day. Rumours, fax machines, car windows… and a garish shade of yellow.
In September 2008, when that famous yellow bar read: “Manchester City sign Robinho”, jaws across the globe dropped open while eyes widened and their brows shot skyward.
“The most sensational move of the transfer window!” the presenter shrieked, before cheers of stunned joy erupted as the camera switched to footage from outside the Etihad Stadium where fans eagerly awaited news.
On the same day the Club had been the subject of a sensational takeover by the Abu Dhabi United Group, immediate action had been taken as the Blues swooped to sign Brazilian forward Robinho from Real Madrid for a British record fee.
It was quite simply ‘unbelievable’.
So much so, that when a 17-year-old version of myself ran into the kitchen to break the news to my dad – who was washing the pots – he told me to “stop being so daft.”
I literally dragged him into the living room and pointed at the screen. His face bore the same expression mine had when I first read the text which swept across the bottom… and then a grin spread across his face, as he slowly shook his head. “Wow,” was all he could muster.
For the first time in my City-supporting life, the future looked bright… and Blue. Bright Blue! Who knew what could – and would – happen in the coming days, months and years?
Robinho’s debut – although it ended in defeat – was particularly memorable. The Brazilian broke the deadlock with a sublime free-kick against the side who had been linked with him all summer and the atmosphere at the Etihad buzzed with excitement, anticipation and belief.
A hat-trick would follow soon after, as the new recruit produced dazzling display after dazzling display, jewelled with flair, pace and some silky samba moves!
The 2008/09 campaign turned out to be an indifferent one for City but Robinho starred, ending the season as the Club’s top scorer with 14 goals.
His second season – plagued with injuries – fell short of expectation and he returned to his native Santos in January before joining AC Milan that summer.
Although the Brazilian did not have the impact many expected on the Premier League following his extraordinary transfer, the move alone sent shockwaves through the footballing world, issuing a statement that City were back amongst the elite with better times just around the corner…