Spurs midfielder linked with Blues
England international and Tottenham midfielder Dele Alli could be on the way to City with reports Pep Guardiola is prepared to spend big and break the world transfer record to secure the in-demand 21-year-old. Barcelona legend Xavi claimed this week he had discussed transfer targets with Guardiola and that Alli was "a very special player", the "sort Pep likes" and "the sort of player that suits the style of game that Pep likes his teams to play". Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino has also said he cannot guarantee the Young Player of the Year will remain at White Hart Lane, but not before pointing out that Xavi is playing mind games.
"He [Xavi] is in a period when he loves to talk, he’s in Doha. And listen he was a Barcelona player - he’s my enemy! He tried to destroy our focus to win because he hates me because he’s Barcelona - player, fan, you know. He is working for Manchester City, maybe?" Pochettino said, according to The Daily Star. "He wants to help Guardiola. I think because we are doing things and the club has a lot of potential, the focus is in our talented player."
The chances of Alli actually switching to the Blues this summer then is currently far from certain, and if you were to take a punt on the outcome, you might be wiser to consider the odds on who might win The Champions League, or perhaps who might triumph at Wimbledon or even the French Open. It’s probably more predictable than all transfer gossip we see year after year after year…
For the record, Spurs paid £5 million for Alli when he was signed from MK Dons back in 2015.
Sticking with transfer gossip, Paris Saint-Germain right back Serge Aurier could be another on his way to City with a potential move having been discussed, at least that’s what the Daily Mail is reporting – although there is little detail in the report. Manchester United and Barcelona are also said to be interested in the Ivory Coast international and there is also speculation he could stay at PSG despite his lack of form.
Meanwhile, an 'exclusive' in the Telegraph claims the Premier League is "scrutinising City’s signing of an academy footballer as young as 11 years old". It says the transfer is one of three academy signings being investigated. City told the 'paper the investigations are a "routine application of the League’s five step process" and that they are "awaiting the findings". Liverpool were fined £100,000 at the start of April and given a two-year ban (the second of which was suspended) after being found guilty of "tapping" up an 11-year-old at Stoke City. The club is also now barred from signing any academy players that have been registered with another team in the previous 18 months.
Finally, Roberto Mancini - City manager from 2009-2013 and the man responsible for guiding us to our very first Premier League title 5 years ago - took time out to come to Wembley to see City take on Arsenal in the recent FA Cup Semi-Final. We won’t dwell on the 2-1 result and Alexis Sanchez's extra-time winner for The Gunnars – but the Italian was pictured on the London Underground posing with a number of fans.
Image source: Wikimedia (Google – image labelled for reuse)