Wilfried Bony

Wilfried Bony
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Wilfried Bony

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Current Club: Free Agent.

Previous Clubs: Al Ittihad, Swansea City, Manchester City, Swansea City, Vitesse Arnhem, Sparta Prague, Issia Wazi.

Loan Clubs: Al-Arabi SC, Stoke City, Sparta Prague.

International: Cote D'Ivoire 59 caps, 18 goals.

Trophies Won: Eredivisie Golden Boot 2012/13. Footballer of the Year Netherlands 2013. African Cup of Nations 2015. English League Cup 2016. Czech League 2009/10. Czech Cup 2009/10.

At one point, in his first Swansea spell, Bony looked like an outstanding striker, with power, pace, workrate and goals. It looked like his weakness was purely a lack of height stopping him being a real presence in the air, but his quality on the ball was enough to make up for it.

Then he moved to Man City. There are those that will tell you he mentally relaxed and thought he had made it now his wallet was full, but most of the coaches that worked with him disagree. Bony had gone from being the focal point of attacks to being a secondary, even tertiary, point of the attack.

It is understandable, if you are on the ball and you have Sergio Aguero and Wilfried Bony in the box, you are always going to look to Aguero first. When he dropped deep to get involved there was Yaya Toure, David Silva, Kevin De Bruyne to pass to rather than him.

His bank account benefitted greatly, but on the pitch Bony was struggling, which was not helped by being asked to play a similar target man role to that which Alvaro Negredo and Edin Dzeko had fulfilled before he arrived. That is just not his game, he is powerfully built but Bony is not a Didier Drogba type of player.

Bony was more of a give-and-go striker, who would look to drop off, receive the ball to feet and feed someone running off him, then get into the box to look to get on the end of something. Now, while he was still being asked to receive the ball to feet and shield it, he was asked to do it while right up against the defenders, rather than by dropping off into space.

His game was now to stay right on top of the defence and keep them penned in so the likes of Silva, Aguero and Toure had space to run into. Unable to adapt properly, suffering with niggly injury problems, his confidence collapsed, which a loan spell at Stoke did nothing to address.

A return to Swansea looked the perfect answer but, just as Bony was looking like regaining some of his previous form there, a cruciate ligament injury hit and he has never recovered from it. The mobility that allowed him to move around and find the spaces between midfield and defence to get involved in the build up but still be able to get into the box to be on the end of things was gone.

Nowadays Bony still has a good touch and there are times he shows flashes of the player he once was, but mostly he looks like a lumbering shell of the man who did so well in his first Swans spell. The explosiveness and turn of pace, that once allowed him to get into space before anyone could react, is gone.

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Requested by - HaizanMSS