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Expectations For 14/15: Willy Caballero

What can we expect from Willy Caballero in the 14/15 season?

Pete Norton

A new boy; an unknown quantity to almost everyone; almost impossible to project how his season will pan out due to the complex situation between the posts for Man City.


Where did he come from, how much did he cost, how old is he?

Caballero arrived from Malaga for £4.4m (link) and he will turn 33 in September.

33 is old, right?

It depends who you ask? I think it's old, but the age curve for goalkeepers may stretch a little further into the sunset than it does for outfield players. English=he might be fine for a year or two.

Are 3 year contracts wise for a 33 yo player?

Do you need me to answer that? *goalkeepers, see above.

Why has Caballero been signed?

Pellegrini knows the player well, likely trusts him and has some recent memories of strong performance. City scouts likely checked him out and no red flags were raised.

Come on, why has Caballero really been signed?

OK, I think that Hart doesn't fill Pellegrini et al with complete confidence and Caballero - at the age he is and with a final chance at a good contract - is a good player to have on board.

As a backup or as a starter?

I think any plan A would have Caballero as the backup due to Hart's excellent, world class form. But I'm not sure Hart has that type of form in him so Caballero represents a good player to have on board in that he may be relatively content as a backup but genuinely has the ability to be the #1.

Will Caballero be the #1 at some point during the season?

Maybe, but not at the start of the season.

So when?

Well, Caballero likely plays in cup games and some soft home games but it would take some monumentally good performances to shift Hart from the #1 spot early in the season. Most likely path Caballero has to the #1 spot is Hart imploding in some spectacular or especially harmful fashion. Painful stuff.

Is Caballero better than Hart right now?

Hmm, if we factor in the difficulty of playing in a new league, with new pressures and unfamiliar styles and shooters, and any effect the language barrier has then I would say Caballero would likely not be better than Joe Hart is right now.

What do you know about his game?

Not much. The octopus.

Do we have any numbers for Caballero's 13/14 season?

No, you could probably find them someplace but I'm not sure what they'd tell you. Quality of team-mate, quality of opposition, league quirks, score effects, the shittiness of save% in small samples would lead us down some dark and erroneous paths.

Do we have anything on Caballero's performances?

Yep, this from last year. He has some real skills.

Beware the youtube effect.