Former Irish international Stephen Ireland has decided that he has had enough as a bit-part player at the world’s richest club, Manchester City, and handed in a transfer request.

Ireland was a peripheral figure in Roberto Mancini’s first season at the helm at Eastlands, and with the possible arrival of midfielders James Milner or Mikel Arteta, it is likely he will fall further down the pecking order.

Although Mancini does not necessarily want to lose his Irish star, it is believed that the Italian recognizes the Irishman’s need to play first team football and will not stand in his way.

It has been a sharp fall from grace for Ireland, who was the team’s player of the season during the 2008/9 season.

However, there are sure to be plenty of Premier League suitors for his services, despite his rather questionable temperament.