EPL

Manchester City won't buy any players in January, insists Guardiola

By Sports Desk December 02, 2019

Pep Guardiola is happy with his Manchester City squad and says he will not delve into the transfer market in January.

The reigning Premier League champions are enduring a difficult defence of their title this season and are already 11 points behind runaway leaders Liverpool after just 14 games.

Guardiola, however, says he will not be forced into bringing in new players next month, citing the refusal of clubs to part with key players midway through the season.

Speaking ahead of City's Premier League visit to Burnley on Tuesday, Guardiola said: "I don't want any players in January. When they come for an incredible opportunity in January for the next four, five or six years maybe we could think about it, but that is not possible.

"Normally, the players we think could be interesting and add something to our squad, their clubs are not going to sell."

While Guardiola looks set to keep his powder dry in January, he is likely to bring in new faces ahead of the 2020-21 campaign, with David Silva's impending departure already confirmed and Fernandinho's future yet to be resolved.

Fernandinho's contract expires at the end of the season and Guardiola says they will not make a decision on the Brazil international before then.

Asked if he would like Fernandinho to stay, Guardiola said: "I think we are going to decide at the end of the season what the situation is for the players who have finished their contracts.

"We will then decide what we have to do or what is best for the club for the next season."

Guardiola refuted suggestions that he faces a rebuilding job at the end of the campaign, suggesting the squad will instead only require some minor tweaks.

"Well, we don't have to rebuild too much," he added. "Three players [Kompany last season, Silva and Fernandinho] does not mean you rebuild the team.

"Rebuilding the team is when you have seven or eight, like we did in the second season when seven players finished their contracts. Buying two or three players is not rebuilding; it's just substituting positions."

Related items

  • It's beautiful, they make me enjoy football – Pogba thrilled by Fernandes and Man Utd forwards It's beautiful, they make me enjoy football – Pogba thrilled by Fernandes and Man Utd forwards

    Paul Pogba is relishing playing alongside Bruno Fernandes and Manchester United's in-form attackers, with their "beautiful" link-up play a joy to behold for the Frenchman.

    United have extended their unbeaten run to 16 matches across all competitions since returning from the coronavirus-enforced break last month and their forwards have played a significant role in that.

    Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood have scored eight goals between them already, while Fernandes has added another four and also grabbed a pair of assists.

    Pogba, too, has impressed since the resumption, coming back into the side after missing the majority of the first part of the campaign through injury, and now there is talk of a possible contract extension for the Real Madrid-linked midfielder.

    While his long-term future remains a little uncertain for the time being, there is no doubt Pogba is enjoying life at United, with his slightly deeper role giving him the opportunity to look on and savour the attacking talents at Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's disposal.

    "From behind I just enjoy it. I'm enjoying just watching Bruno, Rashford, Martial and Mason, who all played the last game, and seeing them score goals," he told United's official website ahead of Thursday's trip to Aston Villa.

    "You just keep applauding, it's beautiful. They make me enjoy football every time!

    "As well though, there is the defensive work that people don't talk about – they do it. The pressing - they do it. That's what you maybe don't see that much.

    "Football fans who know football see that and that's the difference that we have and it's great to see them at their best.

    "I think it's about the mentality – the attacking and defending that they do every time – that helps us, it helps the midfielders and the defenders and obviously the talent speaks for itself - the goals and the action and the football, everything."

    Pogba believes Fernandes and United's frontline all have the desire to keep pushing themselves for more – a trait which makes them even more dangerous.

    "For example, Martial scored three goals, his first hat-trick, then he goes again, you have to carry on. He wants to take another ball home, you know," Pogba continued.

    "You have to have this mentality, score a goal and do it again and again… Bruno, Rashy [Rashford], Mason. If you've got two goals, great, but go for three, why not? You have to keep this mentality, keep a clean sheet too. We want to keep working on this and we have the mentality to do it.

    "That's also the mentality of this club, it's always been like that. We're never satisfied with one trophy or one game we win or two games or 10 games, you want more, you always want more. That's what makes Manchester United the biggest club, for me, in England."

    Victory for United on Thursday will take them to within a point of fourth-placed Leicester City, who Solskjaer's men will face on the final day of the Premier League season.

  • Rumour Has It: Havertz wants Chelsea move, Griezmann gets Barcelona reassurance Rumour Has It: Havertz wants Chelsea move, Griezmann gets Barcelona reassurance

    Kai Havertz is reportedly ready to leave Bayer Leverkusen – and he knows where he wants to go.

    The Germany international enjoyed another fine campaign with the Bundesliga club, leading to interest from across Europe.

    And, it seems Havertz knows his preferred destination.

     

    TOP STORY – HAVERTZ WANTS CHELSEA MOVE

    Havertz wants a move to Chelsea and his agents have told Bayer Leverkusen he would like to leave if an important bid arrives in the next few weeks, according to Fabrizio Romano.

    The 21-year-old is contracted at Leverkusen until 2022, but has been linked with the likes of Real Madrid.

    Havertz scored 17 goals for Leverkusen in 2019-20, having netted 20 times in the previous season.

    ROUND-UP

    - Amid growing pressure on Antoine Griezmann, Barcelona have reassured the forward he has a future at the LaLiga club, according to ESPN.

    - Real Madrid will listen to offers for forward Luka Jovic, according to Marca. The Serbia international has struggled during his first season at the LaLiga giants, scoring just twice in 25 games. Jovic has been linked to the likes of Milan, Arsenal and Newcastle United.

    - Staying at Real Madrid and Sport reports the LaLiga leaders will target Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe and Rennes midfielder Eduardo Camavinga next year.

    - Paul Pogba may be happy to stay at Manchester United. Fabrizio Romano reports United have opened contract talks with the midfielder's agent Mino Raiola, with Pogba having been linked to Madrid and Juventus.

    - Alexandre Lacazette could be set for an Arsenal exit. CalcioMercato reports Juventus have already started talking to the forward's agents about a possible move.

    - Also in Turin, CalcioMercato says Juventus are considering a move for Atalanta left-back Robin Gosens if Alex Sandro decides to leave.

  • Setien hails Suarez after reaching Barca landmark Setien hails Suarez after reaching Barca landmark

    Barcelona head coach Quique Setien lauded Luis Suarez after the star forward moved third on the club's all-time goalscoring list thanks to his match-winning display against Espanyol.

    Suarez surpassed Ladislau Kubala with his 195th Barca goal from 278 appearances in Wednesday's 1-0 win over LaLiga rivals Espanyol, who were relegated as a result.

    Only two players have scored more goals for Barca – superstar captain Lionel Messi (630) and Cesar (232) – following his 56th-minute strike at Camp Nou midweek.

    And Setien was full of praise for Suarez, who arrived from Premier League giants Liverpool in 2014.

    "It wasn't difficult to figure out Luis Suarez was eventually going to score goals again as he continues to play games," Setien told reporters.

    "When you're not playing for a while you need time to get back into your rhythm. That's something you only get through minutes on the pitch.

    "He knows how to score goals and he's always showed that throughout his career. He did it, which moves him up to third in Barcelona's all-time scoring list and you can't take that away from him."

    Barca moved within a point of bitter rivals and leaders Real Madrid, who have a game in hand as they prepare for Friday's match against Deportivo Alaves.

    Setien's Barca are nine games unbeaten following back-to-back wins, though they were far from their best after Sunday's 4-1 rout at Villarreal.

    "I think we certainly weren't brilliant," Setien said. "It was a difficult match. We managed to win and we'd all like to repeat, of course, the same performance we produced against Villarreal but it's not easy.

    "You always need to take your opponents into account. In any case, I'm very happy with the win because I watch practically all the matches in LaLiga and I see a lot of teams are winning 1-0 and finding it a struggle. It's a very level playing field right now."

    Barca substitute Ansu Fati was sent off after coming on at the start of the second half, while Espanyol's Pol Lozano was also dismissed.

    Five minutes after coming on teenager Fati was heading off again, a VAR review upgrading his caution to a red card as he was punished when a high right foot caught Fernando Calero.

    "He was very humble afterwards," Setien added on Fati. "He came to talk to me. He felt very bad about what happened.

    "He wasn't provoked. He went in to win the ball. After I watched it, the challenge looked harder than it actually was. It's a moment that could have been avoided. When he goes to win the ball I saw he tried to fold his leg back so there wouldn't be any contact, but the decision was made.

    "He'll be affected by this and we'll see what the punishment is but it's a moment that I don't blame him for."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.