Talks commence over January deal as toppled force make Man City plan

Date published: Monday 11th October 2021 4:35 - Samuel Bannister

Raheem Sterling and Bernardo Silva celebrate Man City goal at Liverpool

Bernardo Silva has been presented with a new escape route from Manchester City in the shape of a side who lost their crown last season.

Silva was considering a departure from Man City over the summer. He no longer held the role of prominence he enjoyed at the peak of his powers. Still only 27, he has plenty of years left at the top level. Naturally, though, he wants to make the most of them.

However, he did not receive offers from clubs of the stature he was hoping for. A move to La Liga would have been high on his order of preference, but it was out of reach. Instead, his main suitors were the likes of Arsenal, whom he did not want to join given their lack of European football.

Silva has since set out on another season with City. Despite the increased competition for places following the signing of Jack Grealish, he has actually started six of their seven Premier League games so far.

But Pep Guardiola has been unwilling to confirm how long Silva will be staying at the club. The manager recently admitted he wants the best for the Portugal international, whether that is at the Etihad Stadium or elsewhere.

Now, one option has emerged should he wish to move on in 2022. According to Calciomercato, Silva has become a target for Juventus.

After winning nine Serie A titles in a row, Juve lost their crown to Inter Milan last season. They face a major rebuild if they are to reclaim such honours.

Successful coach Massimiliano Allegri returned in the summer to oversee that process. He needs reinforcements to his playing squad over time, though, particularly in midfield.

Juventus signed Euro 2020 winner Manuel Locatelli from Sassuolo in the summer. But they are now looking for an additional option in the middle of the park who can do a bit of everything.

Ideally, they want a player who can contribute plenty of goals. In that regard, Silva – whose career best tally was the 13 he managed in his second season with City – would fit their requirements.

Calciomercato claim that Juventus have already made contact with Man City to lay the groundworks for a potential deal. They would prefer to take Silva on loan at first. Then, in the summer, they could explore a permanent transfer.

City will want to recoup a decent fee for a player who cost them £45m in 2017. Juventus are unlikely to offer that in January, which is why they would hope to negotiate a loan deal first.

Pep Guardiola giving instructions to Manchester City substitute Bernardo Silva

Then, their ability to accommodate Silva may hinge on whether they can offload unwanted options such as ex-Arsenal man Aaron Ramsey. Should they clear that space, City could expect to hear from them about Silva.

He remains under contract until 2025 and has made 210 appearances for the club to date. In that time, he has provided 36 goals and 44 assists. But even after his return to regular gametime in the formative weeks of the season, those tallies may be approaching their final standings.


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City look for Serie A signing

Meanwhile, as one City player is linked with a Serie A club, one Serie A player is linked with City.

Guardiola’s men are in the race to sign Dusan Vlahovic from Fiorentina as he outlines himself as one of Europe’s most promising strikers.

The Serbia international is in high demand due to his goalscoring exploits from last season. But City seem to be one of the favourites to take him.

Guardiola has sometimes opted for a system with a false nine after opting not to sign a replacement for Sergio Aguero in the summer.

However, adding a centre-forward would only make them stronger and Vlahovic could give them guarantees for years to come.

With that in mind, they are expected to step up their pursuit of a man whose contract expires in 2023.

In fact, La Nazione recently claimed their offers to the striker and his agents were already on the table.

They are willing to improve the salary he earns in Florence and give his representatives more commission than Fiorentina would have done so for the renewal that he will not sign anyway.

There are other suitors but it seems they are willing to strengthen their attack with the 21-year-old.

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