Player Profile – Alvaro Negredo

Built For The Premier League – City’s Latest Big Name Signing Negredo

Alvaro Negredo is one of the highest-profile signings of the summer and could bang in plenty of goals for Manchester City this season as they challenge for the Premier League title.

Personal information
Full name: Alvaro Negredo Sanchez
Date of birth: 20 August 1985 (age 27)
Place of birth: Madrid, Spain
Height: 1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)
Playing position: Striker

Club information
Current club: Manchester City
Number: 9

Youth career
1997–2001 Escuela Futbol A.F.E
2001–2004 Rayo Vallecano

Senior career
2004–2005 Rayo B 15 Appearances, 14 Goals
2004–2005 Rayo Vallecano 12 Appearances, 1 Goal
2005–2007 Real Madrid B 65 Appearances, 22 Goals
2007–2009 Almeria 73 Appearances, 32 Goals
2009–2013 Sevilla 180 Appearances, 85 Goals
2013– Manchester City 0 Appearances, 0 Goals

National team
2006 Spain U21 1 Appearances, 0 Goals
2009– Spain 14 Appearances, 6 Goals

After months of hopeful denial, on June 1 2013 Sevilla fans seemingly accepted that they would not see star striker Alvaro Negredo in the club’s white and red jersey again, as he leisurely strolled off the pitch against Valencia, milking a standing ovation for everything it was worth after scoring all four goals in a home 4-3 win.

For weeks Negredo looked destined to incur the wrath of Sevilla supporters as he was reportedly set to join Atletico Madrid as a replacement for Monaco-bound Radamel Falcao, but they were not prepared to meet the €25 million asking price.

Sevilla president Jose Maria Del Nido – who in 2011 was sentenced to seven-and-a-half-years in prison for embezzlement – made it abundantly clear that he would not be forced to sell the Spain international on the cheap regardless of the club’s €49m debt, and the notoriously tough negotiator has been rewarded for his persistence.

Last month, the 2006 and 2007 UEFA Cup winners confirmed the 27-year-old will join Manchester City in a deal reported to be worth €25m plus a further €3m in add-ons, where he will meet up with former team-mate Jesus Navas.

Alvaro Negredo’s career began in the city of his birth, Madrid. He signed his first contract with Rayo Vallencano in 2004, where he would make his professional debut.

After less than a full season with Rayo’s first team, in 2005, 20-year-old Negredo was snapped up by Spanish giants Real Madrid, and played for the Madrid 'B' squad.

His two years with Real Madrid B were quite successful; he managed to score 22 goals in 65 appearances. Unfortunately, he was never able to make a league appearance for the first team (only a few games in the Copa del Rey).

But, his success did not go unnoticed, and newly promoted Alemeria were very interested. In 2007, they were able to buy his services for a fee around €3 million.

Again the physical Spanish striker was successful. From 2007-2009 Negredo netted 32 goals in 70 league appearances, a very clinical record. After a good two years with Almeria, Negredo would be brought back by Real Madrid, but sold again that same summer to Sevilla for €15 million.

The move to Sevilla was what he needed to boost him to league wide stardom. Upon first arriving at the club, Negredo faced competition for a starting position from popular Brazil striker Luis Fabiano, but would soon claim it for himself.

At Sevilla, he really became known for his finishing inside the box, where the majority of his 85 total goals (in 180 appearances) were scored. He also finished last season 4th on La Liga’s goal charts scoring 25 (only behind Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Radamel Falcao).

With that sale, Negredo had the faith and central role he craved, and he made the most of it. That term he bagged 20 league goals in 34 matches, followed by 14 in 30 the following season as he did his best to cope with fitness problems and a woefully erratic supporting cast.

The 2012-13 season would prove to be his best in front of goal. In 36 league matches, the Rayo Vallecano youth product managed to score 25 of Sevilla’s 58 goals, highlighting that without him they would have been in serious trouble as mid-table mediocrity was the outcome at the end of the season.

The quicker tempo of the Premier League could play to the powerful frontman's strengths. When making a split-second decision there have truly been few better finishers in Spain over the last few years, and the increased pace of English football will likely see his thinking time cut short, thus forcing him to act on instinct.

All 25 of his league goals last season came from inside the penalty area, evidence that he can be relied on to find the net when used as the focal point of an attack. While he can sometimes waste chances, it should not be forgotten that he has excelled in a wildly inconsistent team while playing as a lone front man.

Manuel Pellegrini bought a striker who is moulded perfectly for English football in terms of his physicality. Good in the air and extremely strong, he will not be bullied by defenders, while he is adept at backing into his marker before spinning around them. The six-foot-one forward likes to be an integral figure, and linking up with Jesus Navas once again could prove to be inspired business by City.

Between them they created 115 chances in La Liga last season and they have honed their combination play for the last four years. If anyone knows how to tee-up the forward, it is Navas.

The fact that City have been willing to spend so much on him should prove to be an immediate confidence boost and huge show of faith.

However, the hard work starts in earnest for Negredo. At Sevilla he was the main man in a team just hoping to reach Europe, now he must prove he is good enough for the next level where the stakes are enormous.