Manchester City News: When asked if he is trying to sign Brighton defender Marc Cucurella, Cityzens manager Pep Guardiola declined to respond.
Oleksandr Zinchenko was sold to Arsenal for $30 million plus a further £2 million in add-ons, leaving City with few choices at left-back. As a seasoned professional left-back, Guardiola only has Joao Cancelo on his roster.
With Guardiola being an admirer of the 24-year-old, Cucurella has been linked with a move to City for a while. In an effort to expedite the transfer, the Spaniard reportedly submitted an official transfer request to Brighton on Friday, according to reports that surfaced on that day.
In a press conference held before Saturday’s Community Shield match against Liverpool, Guardiola was questioned about the transfer but would not comment. He plays for Brighton. I’m at a loss for words, he said.
Manchester City News: What did Guardiola say?
When asked if City would want a left-back more generally, he added: “If it is possible, certainly. Otherwise, we continue using what we have. There is enough room for us to play there. There, Joao, Josh [Wilson-Esbrand], and Nathan [Ake] can all play.
The Athletic claims that City has already had a £30 million proposal for Cucurella flatly rejected by Brighton. The Premier League champions are willing to spend up to £40 million to get his services. However, even at that price, they will fall £10 million shy of the Seagulls’ £50 million asking price.
Brighton is determined to use Cucurella in the same manner as they did with Benjamin White. They sold White to Arsenal for £50 million last summer. Cucurella had a strong season under Graham Potter last year.
Cucurella, who cost Brighton £15 million when he left Getafe, played 38 times in his rookie campaign. Brighton has already made an effort to improve the defender’s contract, which runs through June 2026.
Given Brighton’s opposition, it appears likely that City may go on to consider additional candidates for the post. Erling Haaland and Kalvin Phillips were previously acquired by Guardiola’s team this summer in high-profile deals. Julian Alvarez joined them after his loan with River Plate came to an end.
Laporte is to miss the start of the season
Aymeric Laporte will be unavailable for City’s season-opening match against Liverpool on Saturday due to knee surgery. After pushing through pain during the last matches of the previous season, the Spain international may be sidelined for at least a month.
“Laporte has an injury. After the previous season, he underwent knee surgery, Guardiola said. Despite suffering a serious injury, he played the last two or three games. He put forth a tremendous amount of effort, but he was unable to finish.
“So far, he is doing great, but since it is a knee, you must be careful. He requires time. I anticipate that he won’t be with us in August, but perhaps in September.”