Premier League Career: Manchester City (2007-2009)
Before Manchester City enjoyed their bounty of richness following the takeover by the Abu Dhabi United Group in September 2008, one of their main superstars was the passing expert Elano. The Brazilian wowed City fans with some storming performances in the 2007-2008 season and had an excellent reputation for causing havoc from direct set-pieces. Capped 50 times by Brazil, he had a successful playing career, winning two league titles in Ukraine and several honours in his homeland.
Elano joined the Citizens in August 2007 for £8 million. He arrived after winning the league in both his seasons in Ukrainian football with Shakhtar Donetsk. Allocated the no.11 shirt after this was vacated by current incumbent Darius Vassell, he started life as a Manchester City player in fantastic fashion. He scored a netbusting free-kick against Newcastle United in September 2007 and followed it up with a similar strike at home to Middlesbrough eight days later. He scored eight goals in his debut Premier League season and showed his versatility too, even playing at right-back in a home win over Portsmouth in April 2008.
He started 2008-2009 also in fine form, striking twice in a 3-0 win over West Ham United. However, the acquisition of Shaun Wright-Phillips and fellow compatriot Robinho in the closing days of the summer 2008 transfer window restricted his dominance on the City side. His only remaining goals came from penalties during the season, ending with figures of six goals from 28 appearances.
With the money now pouring in and clearly not a Mark Hughes signing, Elano moved to Galatasaray in July 2009, spending 15 months in Turkey before returning home to Brazil. He stopped playing in 2016 and was most recently the interim manager of former World Club champions, Santos before being sacked on New Years’ Eve 2017.