Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini thinks Owen Hargreaves can enjoy a vital role in the side's challenge for silverware following the injuries-affected midfielder marked his debut having a goal within the 2- League Cup third round conquer Birmingham.
Hargreaves have been sidelined for virtually three seasons with a number of knee injuries and also the former England star was launched by Manchester U . s . in the finish of last season following the champions declined his offer to experience free of charge.
The 30-year-old even published a relevant video online attempting to attract curiosity about his services because he frantically attempted to bring back his career.
Ultimately, Mancini required the bait, nipping Hargreaves on a totally free transfer yesterday the transfer deadline and the gamble seems to possess compensated off.
Hargreaves looked who is fit throughout his 57-minute appearance against Birmingham at Eastlands on Wednesday, together with his fine lengthy-range strike an ideal morale-boost after just six minutes of action within the last 3 years.
"It had been great for him," Mancini stated. "Owen is an excellent player, who are able to become an essential player for all of us.
"He has not had any problems within the last three days. Right now his knee is okay.
"We stated prior to the match we'd provide him between 45 and an hour. Because it switched out, he was okay for 60."
Mancini must now decide the easiest method to plot Hargreaves' progress, understanding the new arrival is going to be refused a psychological reunion with former club Bayern Munich within the Champions League in a few days because he wasn't registered in City's 25-guy European squad.
"We did not understand what his condition could be whenever we needed to decide," stated Mancini.
"It had been difficult. It's possible we're able to bring him in throughout The month of january.
"But he's only performed an hour. It is now essential that he rebounds correctly while he could be great for us and England.
"After such a long time out, I do not think it had been simple for him before the overall game. But he labored well and obtained an incredible goal."
Mario Balotelli added another before half-some time and with Birmingham offering merely a limited threat, City could coast home.
It had been a night over-all for City as Kolo Toure was named skipper because he performed his first game since finishing a six-month prohibit for any unsuccessful drugs test.
"I'm happy for him too," stated Mancini. "It had been the right decision to select him as captain."