Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Guardiola Looking For Replacement For Injury-Prone Benjamin Mendy

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Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has admitted he is looking into signing a new left-back over the summer due to Benjamin Mendy’s continued injury struggles. Mendy has made just 16 Premier League appearances since joining City in the summer of 2017, with serious knee injuries disrupting both of his seasons in English football. The French international was on the bench for City’s victory over West Ham on Wednesday night, but Guardiola has now revealed that the 24-year-old remains some way from full fitness and was never likely to take the field at the Etihad.  “I don’t know what’s going to happen but we are thinking about the chance to find some players in that position,” Guardiola said on Friday. “Today he (Mendy) is not fit. It (injury) happened two seasons, it can happen three. Hopefully not, he’s working on that, but the truth is we have only been able to use him a few games, that is the reality. “So at the end the strongest guys are there every day and that is the truth, so that is why we are looking maybe for next season.” Having already claimed the Carabao Cup, City travel to Bournemouth on Saturday trailing Liverpool by just a point in the Premier League title race, while their continued presence in the Champions League and FA Cup means an unprecedented quadruple remains a possibility. Despite the reigning Premier League champions’ success, Guardiola is keen to strengthen other parts of his squad come the end of the season. “There are three or four positions I think we have to try to look for and some ideas we have,” Guardiola said. “I don’t know in the end what’s going to happen, but it’s an option to buy a left-back. “You know holding midfielder we are going to try and another position we are thinking about.” City are also fighting to keep hold of midfielder Ilkay Gundogan, with the Germany midfielder having so far rebuffed the club’s offer of a new contract. The 28-year-old has talked openly about considering running down his current contract, which ends in the summer of 2020, as he believes his next deal will be the last major one of his career. “He knows what we want. He knows what we think about him but the same as other cases we’ve spoken about in the past, at the end the last decision is not in our hands,” Guardiola said. “We try to speak with him. We want him to extend the contract right now. Yesterday would have been better than today and today better than tomorrow, but if he doesn’t want, we cannot do anything else. If he 100 per cent (wanted to stay), the deal would be done.” Photo Credit: Getty

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