It has been an enthralling two months in the world of football, as the 2016-17 summer transfer window has been one of the most active ones in recent years. While the record for the transfer fee was broken this time by Manchester United as they bought the charismatic French midfielder Paul Pogba, Real Madrid, who have been very fond of doing so in the past few years, just bought their own academy product back from Juventus in the form of Alvaro Morata. But most of the buzz was created by both the Manchester teams, not just because of the magnitude of the clubs, but also because of the managers associated with them.
While Jose Mourinho is back in the Premier League, this time with the Red Devils, after getting fired last season as the Chelsea boss, Pep Guardiola has come to Manchester City to prove that he, indeed, is the best in the world. And the Spaniard has lived up to the expectations so far in the transfer window, as he has landed some of the finest talents at the Etihad stadium. Guardiola broke the record for spending in a single window in the Premier League, splashing out a staggering £169 million. As the transfer window is now shut, we look at the Manchester City squad and the changes made for the upcoming season.
The Goalkeeping Saga
To say that Joe Hart is a good goalkeeper, will be an understatement and an insult to the Englishman. On his day, Hart is one of the finest goalkeepers in the world. The 29-year-old’s shot-stopping and positioning is excellent. But, in simple terms, he is not Guardiola material. Because even though a goalkeeper’s primary job is mostly related to his hands, Pep wants his goalkeepers to be equally good with their feet. And that’s the only reason why Hart’s departure from the City squad can be justified, considering that the big man has been with the club for ten years now. Hart’s loan move to Serie A side Torino is heartbreaking for the city fans, who have been firm supporters of the keeper throughout his career.
But Pep is the kind of manager, who has his own way of dealing with things. It doesn’t really matter to the Catalan manager whether a player is popular or not with the club supporters. What matters to Guardiola is that he can get what he wants from every single player on the field, as well as on the bench.
Guardiola found what he was looking for in this section of the field in the form of Claudio Bravo, who arrived from Barcelona for a fee of around €18 million. The Chile captain has been in great form over the past two years since joining Barcelona in 2014, and was instrumental in both of the Liga winning seasons for the Catalan club. Guardiola created the Barcelona way of playing football, and therefore he can rely on Bravo to fit in the City squad. But Bravo doesn’t offer a future prospect for the club, as the Chilean is already 33 and won’t be expected to play at the top level for more than a couple of years.
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