Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Man City find new Mahrez with high risk signing to shatter club record and land Arsenal blow

Pedro Neto, Pep Guardiola

Man City are targeting a move for Wolves winger Pedro Neto

Manchester City have locked on to Wolves winger Pedro Neto and how much they’ll have to pay has been revealed, though one other Premier League powerhouse could yet foil the move, according to a report.

Pep Guardiola opted against signing a direct replacement upon selling Riyad Mahrez to Saudi Arabian side Al-Ahli last summer.

Mahrez was among the Premier League’s deadliest left-footed forwards during his time at the Etihad. The Algerian helped Man City win four EPL titles during his five years at the club.

A new winger did arrive at City last summer, though the right-footed Jeremy Doku plays exclusively on the left side.

As such, Guardiola has rotated between his options for the right side, with Bernardo Silva generally getting the nod in the biggest games.

However, Silva is a key transfer target for both PSG and Barcelona this summer. The Portuguese – who is an altogether different player to Mahrez anyway – can be signed via a £50m release clause.

In the event Silva does depart – or even if he stays – Man City hope to sign a new left-footed winger who can replicate the direct running, pace, trickery and end product Mahrez provided.

According to a fresh update from the Telegraph, the man they’ve turned to is Wolves ace Pedro Neto.

Man City want Neto despite major concern

Neto is widely regarded as one of the Premier League’s most difficult wingers to defend on his day. Unfortunately for Wolves and Neto, those days have been in frustratingly short supply over recent seasons due to persistent injury issues.

Indeed, the 24-year-old has racked up just 51 EPL appearances over the last three seasons. Nonetheless, he did make a big impact when on the field this term, notching 11 goal contributions across 20 outings.

Man City are seemingly prepared to take a chance on Neto in spite of his chequered injury record. Signing an explosive winger who is also proven in England would be a statement of intent for City and news of the move would ring alarm bells down at Arsenal.

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The Gunners once again came close to toppling City on the domestic scene this season, though fell short when the final chapter was written.

Few would bet against those two clubs duking it out for the title again next season and the arrival of Neto at the Etihad would provide Guardiola with a lively new weapon.

However, a move is far from straightforward for Man City for two reasons.

Wolves demand £60m for Neto; another EPL side keen

Firstly, Wolves are under no pressure to sell players to conform with the Premier League’s PSR rules.

As such, they’ll only entertain sales at their target price which is £60m. A sale of that size would represent a new club record at Wolves, with their highest ever sale Matheus Nunes’ £53m move to Man City last year.

Furthermore, the Telegraph point out Newcastle are also in the mix for Neto, though they too harbour concerns over Neto’s injury history.

In the event Neto’s time at Molineux does come to a close this summer, the livewire winger will be sad to part company with manager Gary O’Neil.

After returning from injury in the final day clash with Liverpool, Neto paid tribute to his manager.

“We have to thank him (O’Neil) a lot because most of the players have improved individually,” said Neto.

“There was an unbelievable improvement after he came in and we should be thankful for him. The little details made a big difference.

“We cannot be happy with 14th place but the start to the season was how it was. The performances this season showed we can do more.”

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