Johnson ruled out

MANCHESTER UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 18: Adam Johnson of Manchester City celebrates scoring his team's third goal during the FA Cup sponsored by E.On Third Round Replay match between Manchester City and Leicester City at the City of Manchester Stadium on January 18 2011 in Manchester England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Per the official site:

"I think we have lost him (Johnson) for three months, it's a big problem for us and it looks like the same kind of injury that Kolarov had."

A big blow of course and one that has added a fresh twist on transfer deadline day, which shuts 23:00 GMT later today.

The news came on the same day that it emerged that Shaun Wright-Phillips had handed in a transfer request, subsequently rejected by the club and Roberto Mancini confirmed it would be difficult for Wright-Phillips to now leave. The BBC however are reporting today that he may leave, but only on a permanent basis.

Looking at the Johnson injury it is ill-timed. Out of the side towards the end of 2010 he forced his way back in over recent games and looks back in form. At the very least he provides a dynamic option from the bench, direct and possessing the ability to drive at defences: a change-up from the more intricate approach that can be blunted.

Whilst the squad is deep, there is little in the way of an alternative to Johnson. I suspect we will see plenty of the Tevez-Dzeko-Silva trio, with Balotelli as the bench option. With a recall for Vladimir Weiss ruled out, Wright-Phillips, whilst not likely as a starter, will be an option from the bench, at least able to offer the ability to run at a defence

Plenty has been speculated as to whether a replacement will be found for Johnson - either on loan or permanently, but for me, this would be a long shot and a move not previously speculated.

Of course, matters could change between now and the end of the day. Feel free to drop by the deadline day thread here and add any thoughts or news that you pick up.

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