Three summer signings at Manchester City for European domination
After years of struggling to break through the semi-final barrier, Manchester City have finally reached the Champions League finale this season. But instead of stopping to celebrate what many other teams may consider a great achievement, the club are now more determined than ever to do better than reach the final. And that’s to earn it.
However, conquering Europe is no easy task. It takes a lot. Along with having the right manager and the right tactics, a top notch team with square stakes in square holes all over the pitch is needed.
Pep Guardiola currently manages one of the best teams in Europe. But there are still weak links. The fastest that comes to mind is the left-back position. It is not the only one, however.
Sergio Aguero’s departure leaves a huge void to fill the attack just when the midfielder needs to be reinforced. So who are the players that City can bring in to take the team to the next level?
Let’s start by looking at the left-back position.
Current team: Benfica
Statistics of the season: two goals, nine assists in 31 league games.
It’s fair to say that Man City gave Benjamin Mendy enough time to play well at the Etihad Stadium. Unfortunately, the Frenchman failed to convince the coaches of his suitability for the club.
Struggling with injuries and poor form, the 26-year-old has accumulated just 49 league appearances in four years at the club. When we consider the type of investment made to keep him away from Monaco, we can say that he did not reimburse the club.
Guardiola has used midfielder Oleksandr Zinchenko at left-back in the most important games (even when Mendy is fit and available for selection). And when the Ukrainian was not available, he turns to right-back Joao Cancelo to fill the void.
Simply put, Mendy has to read the writing on the wall. He did not live up to expectations. It is time to move on.
Grimaldo was tipped as a possible replacement. The Spaniard rose through the ranks at Barcelona before leaving for the Portuguese side in search of first-team football. He has so far racked up 200 appearances since joining Benfica in 2015.
Former teammate of Ruben Dias, he will fit perfectly into City’s defense. His numbers also show he can be productive on both sides of the pitch. This will instantly improve the team.
Another player for the City-linked post is Valencia’s José Gaya. The 26-year-old Spain international is also a solid option. He comes loaded with experience ready to leave a mark on the team.
Current team: Aston Villa
Season statistics: six goals, 10 assists in 26 league games.
Lionel Messi of Aston Villa does not need to be introduced. His influence on the team has been phenomenal, leaving many in awe of the enormous talent the England number 10 possesses. The Birmingham-born star can step into any European team and order a starting kit immediately.
He’s so good.
For some players, the stats don’t do them justice. Statistics cannot tell how much the team is rallying around him and he provides leadership in the offensive and defensive phases of the game.
When Aston Villa charges more than £ 100million on a player, it becomes clear that he is not just another player. While Kevin De Bruyne and Ilkay Gundogan are on the wrong side of the 30s, calling on Grealish will be the perfect decision to add quality, creativity and courage to the squad.
Current squad: Tottenham
Age: 27 years old
Season statistics: 23 goals, 14 assists in 35 league matches.
While the footballing world still wonders why Manchester City let Sergio Aguero go this season, the decision will only make sense if the club legend is replaced by another extraordinary player in Harry Kane. The Spurs and England captain is a special breed but is held back by an underperforming team.
Age is no longer on his side, the attacker wants to go out. He forces Daniel Levy’s hand to let him go, but the Tottenham boss has a reputation for taking a firm stance on leaving players when the team still needs it.
Kane is ready to take a chance and revealed in a recent interview that he is keen to have a chat with Levy regarding his future.
Pressed to reveal which team he would like to play for, he touted Kevin De Bruyne’s virtues on the pitch. It was more or less a “come get me” call from City. Aguero’s departure provides the perfect opportunity to intervene, but a transfer fee of £ 150million could be the stumbling block.
However, if a deal can be made to suit all parties, including a fee cut and one player plus cash exchange, City will be better off. Gabriel Jesus can go the other way as youngster Liam Delap takes over to learn from the Premier League’s top striker while preparing for the future.
The addition of these three players will certainly make the Blues stronger and ready to storm Europe.