According to reports in The Times, Manchester City have pulled out of a potential race with rivals Manchester United to acquire the signing of Monaco wonder-kid Kylian Mbappe this summer.
Pep Guardiola’s side had been one of the front-runners for the 18-year-old after his blistering performances this season, but the report claims that they are now put off by the £110 million tag.
It is believed that the Spaniard – although a huge admirer of the French international – sees the price tag as too excessive, and will now put his focus elsewhere on improving his squad.
Mbappe has had an exceptional season in France, managing 21 goals in 34 games for Monaco which includes five goals in the Champions League knock-out stages – two of which were against City.
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has received a huge boost ahead of the Manchester derby later this evening with the news that Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero could be fit enough to feature.
Reports in the Manchester Evening News suggest that both forwards have partaken in training over the past day and could play a part against top four rivals Manchester United.
19-year-old Jesus has been out since February after suffering a fractured metatarsal against Bournemouth but has stepped up recovery hugely in recent weeks to put himself in contention.
Speaking about the Brazilian striker, Guardiola said:
“Gabriel has no pain at all, so he is ready. But after three months out, his physical condition is not optimal.”
Fellow South American Aguero limped off the Wembley field during extra-time in City’s FA Cup semi-final exit, but the City boss is hopeful that his top goal-scorer will be fit in time to face United.
“He is much better. Today he make a part of the training session.”
It’s not such as good news as far as midfielder David Silva is concerned, however, with the Spaniard remaining a doubt after coming off injured after just 20 minutes on Sunday.
In other news, out-of-favour Manchester City midfielder Nolito has reportedly been told he can move back to Spain during the summer transfer window according to local reports.
The Manchester Evening News claims that Nolito is no longer part of Pep Guardiola’s future plans at the Etihad, after only playing 50 minutes of football from the bench since the beginning of 2017.
It is believed that a move would take him back to former side Celta Vigo, but club president Carlos Mourinho has said that the 30-year-old would need to take a pay-cut if he were to re-join.
Speaking on TVG, as quoted in the Manchester Evening News and Goal.com, Mourinho said:
“Nolito can return, yes, but we cannot pay his salary.
“The same happened with Iago as we could not pay him as much.”
The Celta Vigo president is referring to former Liverpool midfielder Iago Aspas, who took a cut in his salary after moving back to the La Liga side – and if a move is to be successful, Nolito will too.
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