Pep Guardiola has given a lengthy transfer news update on Harry Kane, Bernardo Silva, Lionel Messi and, oh yeah, the $140 million arrival of Jack Grealish.
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Busy times at Manchester City.
Speaking to reporters ahead of the FA Community Shield against Leicester City at Wembley on Saturday, Guardiola was asked about City’s pursuit of Harry Kane.
The reigning Premier League champions had a bid of $140 million turned down by Tottenham for Kane earlier this summer as the north London club are said to want over $200 million for the England striker.
“He (Kane) is a player for Tottenham Hotspur and if Tottenham don’t want to negotiate, it is finished,” Guardiola said. “I think Man City and many clubs in the world want to try to sign him, we are not an exception, but it depends on Tottenham. It is different to Jack. He had the release [clause] and Jack is different. Harry is exceptional and we are interested in him but if Tottenham don’t want to negotiate, nothing more to say.”
What about Messi?
Aside from chasing Harry Kane, there’s also the small matter (read: gigantic) of Lionel Messi now being free and available to sign.
Messi, 34, will not sign a new contract at Barcelona after the La Liga giants could not afford his wages and still abide by La Liga salary rules.
That news came as a huge shock for everyone, including Barcelona legend Guardiola. Does that mean City will be pushing to sign Messi?
“It looked like it finished well in terms of continuing with Barcelona and in the end, it was a surprise for everyone, me included of course but I think Joan Laporta was clear today the reason why,” Guardiola said. “We spent £40million on Jack Grealish. £100million we pay and £60million we won in the last year and he will bring the number 10 because we were convinced for Jack Grealish. Right now it is not in our thoughts [to sign Messi].”
What about outgoings?
As Guardiola mentioned there, there’s a need to balance the books and they have spent most of their prize money and revenue from last season on signing Jack Grealish.
City’s manager confirmed multiple players have asked to move on this summer, one of whom is Bernardo Silva.
“Not just Bernardo, there are two, three, four players who want to leave but they are our players under contract and when they bring some offers and want to leave, we are open to discuss for absolutely everything with all the players in the squad,” Guardiola said. “But it depends on them and otherwise they continue to train and I decide if they play or don’t play.”
With Grealish, Kevin de Bruyne, Riyad Mahrez, Phil Foden, Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus around, plus maybe Harry Kane, the attacking areas of City’s squad is stacked.
Bernardo Silva would raise plenty of funds if he is sold, so too would the likes of Gabriel Jesus and maybe even Mahrez.
It seems like Guardiola wants to freshen things up as he pushes hard to try and win the UEFA Champions League this season.
It also seems like he wants Kane to lead that charge, however that can be worked out financially, but it looks increasingly likely that Messi will be heading to PSG rather than Manchester City.