Pep Guardiola has confirmed that up to four players ‘want to leave’ Manchester City this summer, including Bernardo Silva, in a press conference before the Community Shield tie against Leicester.
According to the Manchester Evening News, Guardiola shared that Silva is not the only player who wishes to depart the Etihad Stadium, with up to four wanting to leave the Premier League champions.
The MEN note that Barcelona and Atletico Madrid have both made enquiries for Silva, who has remained a key player despite being rotated more than usual over the last two seasons.
Guardiola reiterated that the ‘door is open’ for these players to leave, but it all ‘depends on them’ and their agents bringing the offers to the table.
Aymeric Laporte is another player who is eyeing the exit door, with the centre-back reportedly making it clear that he wishes to leave. Real Madrid and Barcelona have already registered interest in the star.
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Here is what Guardiola had to say on Silva and the other wantaway Citizens:
“He’s our player. Not just Bernardo, there are two, three or four players that want to leave but they are our players under contract and when they bring some offer and their agents come here and they want to leave we are open to discuss absolutely everything but it depends on them.”
“Otherwise, they will continue training really well, they will stay here and I will decide if they stay or don’t stay.”
“The players who want to leave know the door is open because we don’t want anyone here unsatisfied but they have to bring someone. Otherwise, they will stay here.”
The potential impact of a possible exit for Silva is no doubt softened now that City have added Jack Grealish to their midfield ranks, but the Portuguese maestro would still be a major loss to the team.
Guardiola certainly wouldn’t have wanted this issue heading into a season which sees them favourites to defend their top-flight title, but it’s not surprising to see some players are keen on something new after years of domestic dominance.