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Dublin: 11 °C Saturday 16 February, 2019

Guardiola wants new centre-back but 'Man City can't afford it'

They’ve got enough full backs though.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola

MANCHESTER CITY MANAGER Pep Guardiola admitted it will be difficult to sign a centre-back after already investing heavily in the transfer market.

City have spent more than £120million on full-backs alone heading into the 2017-18 Premier League season, signing Benjamin Mendy, Kyle Walker and Danilo, as well as Bernardo Silva and Ederson.

With only Vincent Kompany, John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi at his disposal centrally after the departure of Alexander Kolarov as Eliaquim Mangala reportedly nears an exit, Guardiola wants a new defender amid previous links with Leonardo Bonucci before his move to AC Milan, as well as Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk.

But the Spanish boss conceded there are currently not enough funds to facilitate the purchase of a centre-back as City also target Alexis Sanchez and Kylian Mbappe.

“I’m happy with John, Vinny and Nico. We are going to see,” Guardiola said. ”We don’t have too much to spend more.

“We spent a lot because we didn’t have a lot of guys. If the market gives us a chance we are going to try.”

Guardiola added: “I was so happy with the squad we had last season. I’m happy with what we have.

“You never hear one bad word about the players. We made good things, played well, but missed situations in the box.

“We decided to buy players to reinforce the team.”

Guardiola’s City face Tottenham at the International Champions Cup on Saturday following their 4-1 rout of Spanish and European titleholders Real Madrid.

Expected to return to Arsenal this weekend, is ‘sick’ Alexis Sanchez playing games?

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