Wilfried Bony joined Manchester City from Swansea on Wednesday to strengthen the Premier League champion’s striking options and fulfill his dream of playing in the UEFA Champions League.
Although Manchester City paid around £26.5 million ($40 million) for the 26-year-old forward, he will be competing for a starting place alongside Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko and Stevan Jovetic.
“Competition is normal,” Bony told The Associated Press after signing a 4 1/2-year contract. “It’s the best players that will make me better. So I will work and then we will see (what happens).”
Bony completed the deal while in Abu Dhabi with Ivory Coast ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations, which runs through Feb. 8. The competition could prevent Bony from making his Manchester City debut for a month.
“It’s for the (Premier League) title and to play the Champions League is why I decided to join Manchester City,” Bony said in French in the interview in Abu Dhabi. “It’s a team that can be champions (of Europe). We can see this for four years. This is very important for me to make a step forward in my career and I am very happy for this.”
“It’s a team of champions, a team that always look to be champions and win trophies,” Bony said. “So I will join in this spirit, and it’s up to me to create my own way and fight to be part of them.”
The need to sign Bony was highlighted by recent injuries which forced City to play midfielder James Milner as a makeshift forward.
Bony, who joined Swansea in 2013 from Dutch side Vitesse Arnehm, has 25 goals in 54 Premier League games (and 34 in 70 in all competitions).
“He is very difficult to mark because he is so strong,” Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini said on the club website. “He is an intelligent footballer who has skill and power. His goals record has been excellent since he came to England.
“He adapted very quickly to the game here, and he will settle in at City quickly. He will be a very good addition to our squad. We now have four top-class strikers.”
Thumbnail photo via Kirsty Wigglesworth/The Associated Press
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