There has been plenty of rumours surrounding Pep Guardiola and which players he will sign for Manchester City next season.
But this week, things have really escalated with it being reported that the Spaniard has met up with Manchester City chiefs in Amsterdam to begin transfer plans.
With the incoming boss set to be given an extremely large transfer budget, it’s no wonder these secret meetings have to take place to discuss possible targets.
SIGN UP NOW
Want to become a GMS writer? Sign up now and submit a 250-word test article: http://gms.to/haveyoursay4
Article continues below
As expected, plenty of names have been thrown around by media outlets - some with very little evidence.
However, one player that has been heavily linked with the club is Ilkay Gundogan and that’s because Manchester city chief Txiki Begiristain has met with representatives of the German.
Article continues below
De Telegraph, a Dutch newspaper, has published pictures of Begiristain meeting with the midfielder’s uncle, and agent, in the Dutch capital, sparking speculation that he is set to join the Citizens.
Gundogan is bound to attract plenty of interest from major European clubs this summer and looks set to leave Borussia Dortmund after five seasons at the club.
The 25-year-old has been linked with Barcelona, Juventus, Arsenal and Manchester United in previous transfer windows, but it now appears City have made the first move ahead of the summer.
Guardiola will be arriving in Manchester after three seasons at Bayern Munich and is seeking his third consecutive league title at the Allianz Area.
However, Gundogan and his Dortmund side will be hoping to ruin Guardiola’s send off at the Bavarian club as they trail by just five points.
If the 45-year-old does lift the Bundesliga trophy come May, it will represent his sixth league triumph in seven seasons after winning the La Liga three times in four years at Barcelona.
The coach has signed a three-year deal at the Etihad on a £21 million-a-year contract and it’s expected that he will be armed with a huge transfer war chest as he looks to conquer England, like he has previous done in Spain and Germany.
And the club may need a hefty overhaul given their inconsistent performances this season. The Sky Blues are fourth and trail league leaders Leicester by ten points - although they have played a match less.
However, City fans are starting to look down, rather than up, in the table and when they do they see a host of clubs snapping at their heels in an attempt to steal that precious fourth spot and qualify for next season’s Champions League.
West Ham and Manchester United are just one point and three points behind them respectively having played a game more, while Liverpool are six points adrift.
Failure to qualify for the Champions League will mean that Guardiola could find it difficult to attract all of his transfer targets.
However, the prospect of working for one of the best coaches in football and the likelihood that they would only be out of Europe’s elite competition for just one year would mean that City would still be an attractive prospect.