Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is gearing up to make a serious statement in this summer’s transfer market.
Despite completing the impressive signing of Borussia Dortmund midfielder İlkay Gündoğan, the Eastlands side have so far been trumped by their Manchester rivals in terms of big money transfer signings.
But reports coming out of the press suggest that the former Barca boss is closing in on two transfer targets, which will put the Blues in good stead now and in the future.
According to Sky Sports, City are very keen on bringing Everton defender John Stones to the Etihad and are preparing a £50m offer to lure the England international to Manchester.
Everton have been made aware of City’s interest, and it is understood, that Stones has made it clear to boss Ronald Koeman that he wishes to leave Goodison Park.
It is also understood that City are closing in on the signing of German wonderkid Leroy Sane.
The 20-year-old is regarded as the most talented player of his generation in Germany and is the kind of player Pep Guardiola, wants in his squad. It is believed that a fee in the region of £40million will be enough to convince Schalke to part ways with their young starlet.
Whilst the signing of Sane will be a lot easier to negotiate than that of John Stones, there is a realistic possibility that both will end up in Manchester, leaving Guardiola with a number of key tactical decisions to make and selection dilemmas to address ahead of the new season.
At Bayern, ‘Pep’ used a vast variety of different formations, which Included b 4-3-3, 4-1-4-1, 3-4-3, 2-3-3-2, built around the flexibility of players.
The key to success for the Spaniard’s teams has been pace and spacial domination. Controlling the ball and controlling the opposition. Circulating possession at pace, making opponents work, passing precisely, and moving into space.
Both Stones, and Sane seem to be players that fit this mold perfectly, and that is why it is unsurprising to many who have followed Guardiola’s career to see the Spaniard be so intent on signing both young stars this summer.
The signings of the highly rated duo, would also certainly lead to a number of players in the City dressing room looking over their shoulders.
With Jason Denayer returning from a loan spell at Galatasaray, and Nicolas Otamendi also at the club, Eliaquim Mangala is set to face increased competition for his place, meaning he may need to seek pastures new to find first team football.
The signing of Leroy Sane would throw into doubt the future of forward Wilfred Bony, who would almost certainly be demoted to fourth choice striker, behind the likes of Sergio Aguero, Sane, and 19-year-old Nigerian striker Kelechi Iheanacho.
Whilst Pep Guardiola will be keen to avoid player unrest so early in his Manchester City career, the Spaniard will also know the importance of shaping the squad in his image as quickly as possible, to ensue City challenge for major honours both domestically and in Europe next season.
It is almost certain that City’s title rivals will add to their squad this summer, with the likes of Liverpool, Spurs and neighbours Manchester United already showing their intent for the new season.
The signings of both Leroy Sane and John Stones, would not only send out a title statement, but a warning to all of City’s rivals that the Pep Guardiola’s notorious spell of domestic dominance is ready to begin in the Premier League.