Mauro Zarate – Unlikely To Stay?

Posted on April 4, 2008 
Filed Under Blues News

I’ve purposely avoided posting about Zarate since his arrival. I think, mainly, because I had a different opinion to everyone else. Everyone else seemed to enthuse about him and think that he could and would be our saviour – it was just a case of banging him into the side and then he’d go and save our Premiership status single-handedly – a bit like Carlos Tevez, a reported hero of Zarate’s, at West Ham perhaps.

What I saw was a kid who was massively talented but too often tried to make too big an impact in the short time available and instead of playing sensible and making an impact with a smart pass, he’d try and beat 3-4 men and bang a shot in, often from distance. I lost count of the amount of times I’d frustratedly throw my arms into the air – ala Fergie when United are 1 down and the assistant ref only adds on 3 minutes of injury time! – when their seemed to be a better option on but he’d still try and beat the man. Exciting but the right thing to do?

We all love a Zarate. He’s one of those players who can genuinely get you on the edge of your seat and make the steep entrance prices worth it. A bit like Cristiano Ronadlo I suppose. He can beat a man, play with either foot, pass (I’m sure!), shoot, jink, dip a shoulder – and he’s a quick learner. He has, in every sense, the footballing world at his feet and whether he stays at St Andrew’s or not, he will go far in the game.

Pitch time has already matured him and he can justifiably say that he’s earnt the right to be in the first XI tomorrow at Wigan Athletic. Three goals in two games and a more rounded team player combined with a generous strike partner who has altered his game to allow the genius that is Mauro Zarate to catapult his talents into the consciousness of an unsuspecting Premier League.

There’s been many a story over the last week about where Mauro will be next season. Zarate would like to be in Birmingham, he even called us ‘Blues’ the other day (not ‘the Blues’). Blues fans would love nothing more, neither would his current manager or set of team mates. However, there’s stories flying around about the Qatari royals blocking the move and a price tag of between £10-20m..

McLeish has stated that a permanent deal is unlikely but is hopeful of another year’s loan. Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur were sniffing around before he moved to Blues and will no doubt have another look if Zarate fails to return to St Andrew’s at the beginning of next season. Other clubs will also have noticed Zarate, especially if he continues the trend of scoring important goals combined with an exciting style of play over the last 5-6 games.

Last week, I said to someone that a loan deal would be the only way that we could hang onto the little fella and I still stand by that. Maybe another good year next season and a push up the table could provide the money required but for now, spending £10m on one player – one that hasn’t even played half a season in England – isn’t realistic. Not for me, anyway.

But what do you think? I’ve started a new poll on the right hand side. Will Mauro Zarate be at St Andrew’s next season? Vote now.

The last poll saw nearly 210 votes with 68% saying that Blues would stay up and the remaining 32% saying that we wouldn’t

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