There simply is not a better team in men’s football than Manchester City at the moment. The Premier League champions of the 2020/21 season sealed the league title once again on the last day of the 2021/22 season. Although City suffered a dramatic loss to Real Madrid in the semi-finals of the Champions League, they played some brilliant football up until the last ten minutes or so of that game.
Many would argue that this City side is almost perfect and not a lot of tinkering needs to be done. Nevertheless, there are certain tiny areas that could do with some change. City are definitely not a side that will need any more big signings this summer considering they just brought in Erling Haaland. They will probably play with an out-and-out striker for the first time in a while. Bearing in mind the number of games City will be playing in the coming season and the fact that they will have a host of players at the World Cup, the following are three players Man City must look to sign this transfer window.
Fernandinho has just made his way out of Manchester City. The Brazilian was a key figure in the City squad and filled in quite nicely for them when Rodri was absent. He also played at centre-back at times. With his departure, City are left slightly short in the defensive midfield department.
Leeds United just about survived relegation last season, though they could be under threat of losing some of their biggest stars. Kalvin Phillips could surely slot in and play that defensive midfield role for Man City, either in rotation with Rodri or even over the Spaniard as the first choice in the role.
Although there is speculation about Phillips signing a fresh deal with Leeds, a City offer could prove too much of an incentive for the midfielder to not move. Phillips was not a regular with Leeds during the 2021/22 season due to injury.
Phillips just provided the one assist from his twenty appearances in the league last season. However, his quality has been noticed over a period of time and he would, in all probability, have a successful time at the Etihad.
The Brighton & Hove Albion left-wingback is a certain shout for Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City side. City could well lose their Ukrainian left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko this season. If he does depart, they would be left with no left-footed players for that left-back role. Although João Cancelo can play there, it would be suitable to have a left-footed left-back in the side in case Pep ever needs one.
Cucurella would be perfect for City given his attacking instincts. He loves to venture forward as he often plays in a back-five for Brighton. It is hard to say whether he would be an upgrade on Zinchenko, though he is more than capable of doing as good a job in the left-back position as the Ukrainian, if not better.
Cucurella’s acquisition would allow Pep to use Cancelo in his preferred right-back role, providing Pep with a lot more flexibility. Cucurella has also shown us that he has a goal in him, a trait that will certainly do him good in a side where goals fly in from every position.
Frenkie de Jong
There is no doubting Manchester City’s quality in the attacking midfield and central midfield areas. Kevin De Bruyne and Bernardo Silva have been running the show for City for quite a while. However, the possibility that Bernardo Silva could depart means City need to keep an eye out for a #8. Frenkie de Jong would slot right into that area for City. Alongside De Bruyne, De Jong would add to the existing threat that City possess. They often play just one holding midfielder, and therefore, it would be ideal to add a #8 like De Jong in midfield for City.
De Jong scored three goals and provided three assists in LaLiga last season. However, it is his ability on the ball, to both carry and make effective passes, that makes him an attractive prospect. He averaged over seven progressive carries in a game last season, just a couple of carries behind Bernardo Silva.
However, in terms of the deal actually going through, City evidently face competition from neighbours Manchester United. That being said, City have Champions League football to offer, and De Jong would most certainly be assured a place in the starting XI of the side. The prospect of a swap for Bernardo Silva has also made its way amongst rumours, and a deal of such nature could prove ideal for all parties included.