Guardiola makes Man City transfer admission after Haaland deal

Pep Guardiola does not think Manchester City will do a great deal more business in the transfer market this summer after already wrapping up Erling Haaland in a stunning £51million deal. But the Blues boss always stresses that he keeps transfer business at arm’s length other than being asked for his opinion.

The Blues will be short of a defensive midfielder with 37-year-old Fernandinho moving on this summer, and with Benjamin Mendy still suspended pending his court case for alleged sexual assaults, they could also do with a left-back. The arrival of Haaland and of Argentina striker Julian Alvarez means the Blues are strong up front, even though Gabriel Jesus is eyeing a move – with Arsenal strong candidates – and Raheem Sterling’s future is still uncertain.

The short-term plan for fringe youngsters like Cole Palmer and Liam Delap – who could land a loan to a Premier League or top Championship club – is also a factor, while James McAtee and Romeo Lavia are also pushing hard to play a bigger role next season. City have been stung by a rash of defensive injuries at the end of this season, and Guardiola says the realisation that it would have been a nightmare if it had happened earlier is also a consideration.

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“I think the squad is strong but you always pray there are no injuries, especially long-term injuries, because it is a massive disturbance with this calendar,” he said. “The club has a duty – not me, the club – and I know they are working on that and always thinking, I am not saying it is going to happen (more transfers) but they always have a plan to see what can happen.

“The club always has to look ahead, to view who is the next manager or staff, or if five players leave who would be the next five new players, or which players from the academy can be part of it like Phil Foden. These things have to be considered constantly.

“You can never say you have a young squad that can stay together for five years. It doesn’t happen. Situations change season by season because players want to play.

“When you have an incredible squad of a high level, players want to play and be happy. They worry they won’t play so they have to leave and be replaced. But it is my personal opinion, I have not spoken to Txiki [Begiristain], but I don’t think much will happen.”

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