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A lot was expected following Pep Guardiola’s arrival at Manchester City last summer. The club had a mediocre campaign under Chilean Manuel Pellegrini and tried to make amends by appointing one of the world’s most renowned managers in Pep Guardiola. Following a successful period with Bayern Munich, Guardiola arrived on English shores with a great reputation of having won silverware in every year he spent as a manager.
All that changed in his first year in England as his team endured a barren run while finishing 3rd in the Premier League. In the Champions League, they were humbled by a strong Monaco team in the quarterfinals. All of this points to the shortcomings in Guardiola’s squad, which has looked leggy and aged throughout a campaign in which they have failed to be consistent with their performances.
Having observed the factors in the squad that need to be changed, Guardiola started out by not handing contract renewals to aged players like Jesus Navas, Pablo Zabaleta, Gael Clichy and Bacary Sagna. While there has also been an announcement regarding Argentine goalkeeper Willy Caballero’s imminent departure from the club. This bodes well for the Citizens as these are the players that made the squad look old and leggy.
At Bayern and Barca, Guardiola had a young and dynamic squad at his disposal. He was always looking to dip into the teams’ youth academies to bolster his squad and having settled in Manchester for a year now, it is presumed that he will do the same at The Etihad too. Under such circumstances, it is obvious that the futures of many players at the club will be uncertain and they will be looking over their shoulders cautiously.
Here are some more players who could be forced to leave the Etihad this summer.
There’s a reason why this player has the middle name ‘promise’. The Nigerian youngster was destined for greatness ever since he scored the winning and only goal in his second ever game against Crystal Palace in the dying embers. West Ham have been credited with an interest in signing him and are ready to bid as much as £20million to secure his signature. The Hammers are desperately in need of firepower after a mediocre season.
Iheanacho’s progress at Manchester City could be humbled by Gabriel Jesus’ dynamic arrival and impact at the club. So it’s a win-win for all 3 parties involved. Manchester City will undoubtedly insist on a buy-back clause and why shouldn’t they? In his first season, Iheanacho’s goals to games ratio was phenomenal. Guardiola will obviously look to dip into the transfer market for attacking reinforcements and that is likely to push Kelechi further down the pecking order – a situation he must look to avoid by departing the club, whether it’s on loan or on a permanent basis is left to the club’s discretion.
The talismanic Frenchman was a revelation when he came over to Arsenal from France, tantalizing Premier League with his silky dribbling and exquisite playmaking abilities. A move to Manchester City followed as Arsenal went through a phase which saw them lose their best players to their rivals due to financial incompetence. He sizzled in his initial years at City but later a mixture of bad form and injuries lead to him being ousted from the squad and was eventually loaned out to Sevilla, where he has enjoyed a re-birth of sorts.
Such form will only see many clubs being ready to take a punt on his talent and he could yet yield out a successful career for himself. Sevilla themselves could be interested in signing him on a permanent basis. Hence, Nasri should look to push through a move as it would benefit him hugely.
The Ivorian striker was a huge hit following his move to Swansea City. He struck up a powerful partnership with Gylfi Sigurdsson and scored goals aplenty at The Liberty Stadium, which saw him move to Manchester City. He was expected to shoulder the burden of goal-scoring with Aguero. But Bony somehow never managed to get going in his new club and was eventually farmed out on loan to Stoke City, where he has scored only 2 goals all season.
Bony is still 28 and has quite a few years left in him, he should look to end his nightmare at The Etihad by moving elsewhere and establishing himself as a supreme goal-getter that he once was. A lot of mid-table Premier League clubs should be interested in him as he’s the kind of striker that thrives on service. If he is given the right kind of service, it is possible that he could roll back the years and perform like his Swansea days.