Manchester City are aiming to become the first side since 2009 to retain the Premier League trophy.
The Citizens cruised to the title last season, finishing 19 points ahead of Manchester United in second, picking up the Carabao Cup on the way. City couldn’t replicate their success in the Champions League, losing to Liverpool in the quarter-final. Pep Guardiola will be hoping for a much better performance in Europe next year.
While their rivals have strengthened significantly in the summer window, Guardiola has made only one major signing – the £60m addition of Riyad Mahrez from Leicester. The Algerian will compete with Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling for a place in the City attack. The Spaniard also wants to sign a new centre midfielder as a long-term replacement for Fernandinho.
The ideal target could be Real Madrid maestro – Mateo Kovacic. Valued at £27m by Transfermarkt, the Croatia international joined from Inter Milan in 2015 but has struggled to break into the first-team ahead of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos. Kovacic started just ten games in La Liga last season and has expressed his desire to leave the club according to reports.
Manchester United have been heavily linked with his signature, but Guardiola should ensure City beat their rivals to the punch. The midfielder is perfectly suited to life at the Etihad, with a fantastic range of passing and excellent technical ability. Kovacic thrives in a deep-lying playmaker role and would flourish alongside Kevin De Bruyne.
Still only 24-years-old, Kovacic’s best years are ahead of him, and Guardiola is the perfect mentor to help him fulfil his potential.
Manchester City fans, would you like to see Mateo Kovacic at the Etihad? Comment and let us know!