By Chris Wright
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has challenged midfielder Stephen Ireland to ‘change his head’ if he wants to regain the form that saw him named City’s Player of the Year in 2008/09.
The 24-year-old playmaker has found his first-team opportunities limited this season following a dip in form and is understood to have met with City’s football administrator Brian Marwood to discuss a summer transfer.
The Irishman is also to believed to have held a final separate talk with his manager before deciding to whether or not to officially hand in a transfer request.
However, Mancini assured Ireland that he does have a future at the club – if he can just get his mindset right;
“I spoke to Stephen two weeks ago but we must speak again soon. I don’t know what he is thinking about his future but, for me, Stephen is a fantastic player and if he can change his head I think he can start to play like that [2008/09] again.”
Ireland is one of many players who are thought to be facing the axe at Eastlands this summer along with Robinho, Craig Bellamy, Roque Santa Cruz, Martin Petrov and Shaun Wright-Phillips to name but a few.