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Bianchi set to be Eriksson's first signing


Reggina striker Rolando Bianchi is poised to become
Sven-Goran Eriksson's first signing at Manchester City, the Italian club said on
Tuesday.
The 24-year-old scored 18 league goals last season as the Serie A
side avoided relegation despite an 11-point penalty for their role in Italy's
match-fixing scandal.
"We have reached a preliminary agreement with
Manchester City for the permanent transfer of Rolando Bianchi... in a 13 million
euro (8.8 million pounds) transfer deal," Reggina president Pasquale Foti was
quoted as saying by British and Italian media. "The deal will be completed on
Wednesday."
-Reuters, Milan.


Although City have declined to confirm the reports so far, it does seem certain that Bianchi will arrive at the club to become the first signing of the new regime and it looks to be an interesting one.


Bianchi had an exceptional season last time around and finished fourth in the race to be Capocanieri in Serie A, notching 18 goals in 37 appearances for a struggling Reggina side. He is twenty-four years of age so should be entering his prime years as a striker and shouldn't experience the growing pains as evidenced by Giorgios Samaras during his time at the club.


On the flipside though is ultimately strikers will be judged solely on goals, and Italian strikers do not in general have a great pedigree with names such as Grabbi and Maccarone having flopped after arriving in the Premier League at a young age.


Undoubtedly Eriksson though will have seen plenty of football during the year he was out of the game, and despite the funds available will not simply be throwing money at every player out there.


As pre-season begins to draw ever nearer, I'd expect that Bianchi would be the first of a series of Eriksson's recruits to arrive at the club.