City set to sign Parma midfielder McDonald Mariga?

Reports in Italy are claiming that Roberto Mancini has nipped in ahead of Jose Mourinho to sign Kenyan midfielder McDonald Mariga from Parma.

The 22-year-old is 6′ 2″ and unsurprisingly has been hailed as a “new Vieira”. He joined Parma in 2007, initially on loan from Helsinborgs in Sweden. Following Parma’s promotion to Serie A he continued to impress and could now be set to move. He appears 1 min 28 secs into this video and scores twice.

The deal is said to be 7 million euros plus Bojinov, who is currently on loan at Parma. Although it’s hard to gauge the accuracy of any figures at the moment.

Mancini has openly been looking for a midfield alternative to de Jong and Barry. With Flamini set to stay in Milan and City refusing to pay over the odds for Gago, it looks like we may have switched targets again as the transfer window draws to a close.

It is stated policy at City to ‘work through a list’ of targets if the top one becomes unavailable. It happened in the Summer when we switched from Eto to Adebayor, and last January when Lassana Diarra became Nigel de Jong.

Having seen Robinho and Weiss leave on loan, it would be nice to see players arrive in the next couple of days, if only to ensure the squad isn’t weaker at the end of January than it was at the start!

If I had to speculate on who we might end up with, I’d currently say Johnson from Boro, Motta (loan) from Roma and a midfielder, who now could be Mariga. Cassano is a long shot, but would be interesting. Benjani is the only senior player looking likely to leave, with Sunderland the latest to show interest.

  • I confess my knowledge of Kenyan midfielders recently playing in Serie B isn’t all it could be, so any additional information on Mariga would be appreciated. Please comment below.
Carling Cup player ratings: Manchester United v Manchester City
Preview: Manchester City v Portsmouth


  1. I am very confident this is an excellent buy. Obviously i am Kenyan and biased. Though it would also bring a very vociferous collection of rabid fans from Kenya (ask Twickenham about our rugby sevens team and fans). I myself have been a Liverpool fan for 25yrs, and will absolutely not mind City winning a championship under Mariga.
    That aside, Mariga is a very skillful, tireless, and tactical player, who under Mancini will blossom. He actually has played In Serie prior to this year, when had stellar defensive games against the likes of Milan, Juventus, Lazio, Roma. He has been on the eyesights of Clubs such as Portsmouth, Ac Milan, Napoli, Manchester and Arsenal. Personally i think they all liked him, but wanted to pay a lesser price due to the relative anonymity of Kenyan soccer on the African football scene, let alone world. He also plays as an attacking, kinda a box-to- box player. Believe me, if Mancini pipped Mourinho to this signing, you could guess they saw some qualities in him.

  2. Thanks Matofa, the more I hear about Mariga, the more I like the sound of him. It seems as though he could be well suited to English football.

    I read today that he’d be the first Kenyan to play in the English Premier League, which is quite a surprise given the number of African players coming to England in recent years.

  3. I am sure he will perform well in Man City and EPL. His physic is made for English soccer. Man City needs a player in midfield who can fight a good physical battle.

  4. That’s a very nice thing for kenyans. I’ve no doubt Mariga is capable of performing well in any club. He’s made us proud. I wish him all the best.

  5. Jeremiah Obingo
    30 January 2010 - 7:48 pm

    Mariga is an outstanding player by all standards and Mancini has made a perfect choice. Although he will be the first Kenyan to play in EPL, his performance will give EPL managers to send scouts to all matches where Kenya is playing. Its now time the football authorities in Kenya stopped the wrangles and focus on developing a strong pool of players.
    Mariga, we are very proud of you, just like we are proud of our athletes, rugby sevens team and Obama!

  6. I am not surprised, it was just a matter of time before our (Kenyan) footballers broke into the best leagues in the world.
    Inetrnational Athletics especially long distance has been sinonymously associated with Marigas country as is lately Rugby.
    Kenyans never let down and I bet on Mariga bringing in a style that is uniquely Kenyan.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published / Required fields are marked *