Pep Guardiola will arrive at Manchester City this summer, and through a combination of the club’s failings this year and the Spaniard’s philosophy and style of play, numerous changes are expected.
Both City and Guardiola’s Bayern Munich side were dumped out of the Champions League in the semi-finals this week, with Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid setting up a Madrid derby in the final for the second time in the last three years.
As the dust settles on what is a disappointing conclusion to both Guardiola and Manuel Pellegrini’s journey in Europe, attention is slowly shifting to how the former can secure success both domestically and in Europe next season with his new club.
It is widely expected that he will be active in the summer transfer market given the finances at his disposal, but there could be a significant clear out too with several familiar faces bidding farewell to the Etihad.
Joe Hart, Bacary Sagna and Gael Clichy at risk
Although the trio are likely to stay given that they have all had solid seasons this year, Guardiola’s emphasis on being able to build from the back starting with his goalkeeper will put pressure on Hart.
Furthermore, the former Barcelona boss needs full-backs that can defend and get forward at every opportunity, and he may well decide that upgrades are needed on his current options.
Willy Caballero, Martin Demichelis, Aleksandar Kolarov, Eliaquim Mangala and Pablo Zabaleta can pack their bags
It’s difficult to see any of these individuals staying at the Etihad, through a combination of age, poor form and not fitting into Guardiola’s ideologies.
A defensive clear out on this scale will mean that the Spanish tactician will be a busy man this summer in bringing in replacements, but ultimately there is a genuine argument to question whether any of the names mentioned above will flourish under his regime.
City fans will likely particularly be disappointed to see Mangala included, as the French international has ultimately failed to live up to his price-tag.
Yaya Toure, Samir Nasri, Jesus Navas and Wilfried Bony heading for the exit door
Toure’s history with Guardiola will see him leave, as his former boss has already offloaded him once before when they previously crossed paths at Barcelona.
As for the remaining trio, while they all have their respective strengths and could offer something, Guardiola will be looking to acquire more talented, younger and more consistent options to ensure that his side are a real attacking threat both in the Premier League and in the Champions League, should City secure qualification.
There is an argument that others could also be included in this list, but whether City’s incoming boss is ready to rip up the entire manual and start all over again is debatable as too much change and losing fundamental players could be a big risk.
The likes of Vincent Kompany, David Silva, Kevin de Bruyne and Sergio Aguero, fitness permitting in some instances, are likely to form the core of the side moving forward, but all will become clearer when Guardiola arrives in Manchester this summer.
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