Striker unlikely

Pep Guardiola poured cold water on the idea of Manchester City signing a striker in the summer after the club were linked with a mega move for Borussia Dortmund forward Erling Haaland.

The Spaniard pointed out the fact that in the current market it was almost impossible for the club to spend the money necessary to bring in a striker who could replace the outgoing Sergio Aguero.

“Listen, with these prices, we are not going to buy any striker,” Guardiola said.

Guardiola confirms Delap to join first team squad next season

Manchester City’s English midfielder Phil Foden (R) walks off the pitch with Dortmund’s Norwegian forward Erling Braut Haaland after the UEFA Champions League first leg quarter-final football match between Manchester City and Borussia Dortmund at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, north west England, on April 6, 2021. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP) (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

“It’s impossible. We will not afford it. That is not going to happen. All the clubs struggle financially. We are not an exception.

“We have Gabriel [Jesus], Ferran [Torres] who has played incredible in this position, we have young players in the Academy, we play many times with a false 9.

“So, I don’t know what is going to happen. Maybe we will buy but maybe we won’t buy a striker for the next season. Today, there is more chance we will not buy a striker.”

Whilst Guardiola did leave the idea to a striker in the summer open with the final words, the reference to Ferran Torres is the biggest hint that the club will not pursue that position.

The Spaniard has developed excellently since arriving from Valencia. He has even played in a central role as has typical midfielder Kevin De Bruyne.

Delap to step up

One other player who could see further game time is youngster Liam Delap. The youth product earned some minutes earlier in the season when both Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus were unavailable and scored in the EFL Cup win over Bournemouth.

A moment young Liam Delap will never forget.#EFL | #CarabaoCup | @ManCity

— Carabao Cup (@Carabao_Cup) September 24, 2020

Guardiola said that Delap would join up with the first team squad fully in training next season.

“Liam is training with us this season, like the first season with Brahim (Diaz) and Phil. Jadon (Sancho) did not accept,” said Guardiola.

“Liam, like (James) McAtee, (Cole) Palmer, and Luke Mbete many players training and doing well. We are in touch with (EDS coach Enzo) Maresca and talking about how they are developing.

“It’s training with us and next season he’ll be with us next season, training every day.”

Could the replacement for Aguero be closer to home than initially expected?

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