Manchester City have had a £38 million bid for Leonardo Bonucci rejected by Italian giants Juventus, according to Sky Sports News.
29-year old Bonucci has had a fantastic Euro 2016 for Italy, and Pep Guardiola obviously wants the Juventus man to partner captain Vincent Kompany in his defence.
The Sky Blues have struggled to find a worthy partner for Kompany over the years, with Eliaquim Mangala, Martin Demichelis, who has now left the club, and even recent recruit Nicolas Otamendi, all struggling to adapt to the Premier League.
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City conceded 41 goals in the Premier League last season, a concerning statistic, and one which ultimately cost them the Premier League title.
Kompany's injury left Otamendi, Mangala, and Demichelis at the heart of Manuel Pellegrini's defence last season, leaving the former champions very vulnerable at the back.
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Guardiola will be building a team to dominate possession in both halves of the pitch, and he will need a central defender who is more than comfortable on the ball, and there aren't many better than Bonucci.
The Italian's pass to Emanuele Giaccherini against Belgium for the first goal in Italy's 2-0 win, portrayed Bonucci's class and vision on the ball, and the centre-back also took Italy's equalising penalty against Germany in the quarter-final, demonstrating his ability as a player.
As well as his eye for a pass and technical attributes, Bonucci has been part of the Juventus defence, also including Giorgio Chiellini and Andrea Barzagli, that have won the last five Serie A titles and reached a Champions League final.
Bonucci may well be the other world-class centre-half City need if they want Champions League success, and with Kompany constantly being sidelined through injury, Guardiola will know he will need at least one other centre-half before the new campaign begins.
Despite having the £38m bid rejected from the Italian champions, Guardiola must go in again for Bonucci; City's defence is their Achilles heel and has been for a long time, but Bonucci could be the final piece of the jigsaw.
According to the Guardian, Guardiola is prepared to offer as high as £51m for the Italian centre-back, and if that bid is officially made and accepted, it would make Bonucci the most expensive defender ever.
Would Leonardo Bonucci be the man to fix Manchester City's defensive problems? Let us know YOUR thoughts in the comment section below!
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