There is a very revealing interview in today's Telegraph by Henry Winter, in which discusses a number of topics with Joleon Lescott: the World Cup, Carlos Tevez, team unity, and of course, his City future.
Is it well worth a read and is very candid, far from the anodyne and cliched responses you come to expect with the majority of footballers. The key point of interest to you all though I'd imagine is the topic of where he sees his future. After an outstanding season in 2012/13 (in which he was arguably better than Vincent Kompany over the whole year) which also saw him appear to establish himself as an England regular his game has gone backwards, and largely through no fault of his own. Even prior to Matija Nastasic bursting onto the scene Lescott had seen Kolo Toure at times preferred early on, but it is the performance of the young Serb that has seen Lescott riding the bench:
"Last year was probably my best for City. I felt wanted. I felt needed. I had an inkling at the start when I wasn't in the Community Shield squad that this year was not going to be as enjoyable."
"I can't afford to go into a World Cup year being uncertain of whether I'm going to play [regularly] here. It seems like I've always been fourth choice with England. I came in six years ago and JT and Rio were 50 caps each, so I was never going to break into that. Then Matty Upson came in, then Michael Dawson, then Gary Cahill. I felt after the Euros, there was an opportunity [to be first-choice] but not appearing consistently here has hindered that.
"I feel I've done enough for the club to demand a bit of respect in terms of they come and tell me what they want, whether it's a new deal, which I would be delighted to sign, or [to go] elsewhere.
Lescott - like England squad compatriot Gareth Barry - has just one season remaining on his contract, but unlike Barry, there is the sense that Lescott may move on (perhaps reluctantly, but resigned to a move nonetheless) this summer with a number of sides likely interested. An important consideration is that Lescott would likely command a sizeable fee for any move.
If so, Lescott has more than achieved his aims at the club after a slow beginning in which it took him at least a season to really impose himself in the side, but he will walk away with a least of pair of medals in his pocket; a return which will vindicate his decision to move to the club back in 2009.