Man City devise three-pronged backup plan if Brighton refuse to drop £50m Marc Cucurella demand

Marc Cucurella, Brighton, May 2022.

Marc Cucurella is the only left-back Manchester City are considering signing this summer, but they will not pay a fee they don’t believe is fair, according to a report.

After strengthening their attack with Erling Haaland and Julian Alvarez, bolstering their midfield with Kalvin Phillips and finding a new backup goalkeeper with Stefan Ortega, left-back is the next position Manchester City are examining.

Last season, they largely relied on Joao Cancelo or Oleksandr Zinchenko there. However, the former is naturally a right footer, while the latter is on his way to Arsenal.

Therefore, finding a natural left-sider to fill the void could complete Pep Guardiola’s lineup. In that regard, their main target is Marc Cucurella after his impressive season with Brighton.

Although he was new to the Premier League last summer, Cucurella adapted almost instantly. He played in all 35 Premier League games available to him after joining partway into the campaign.

There have been plenty of reports about Manchester City making a move for the Spaniard. However, Brighton are holding firm to a high valuation.

According to ESPN, the Seagulls would like to receive £50m by selling Cucurella. At present, City are only willing to pay £30m. Even that price would ensure Brighton doubled their original investment.

But the Premier League champions would walk away from the deal if Brighton refused to drop their demands. The report points to previous examples of them backing away from interest in Harry Maguire, Fred and Alexis Sanchez – all of whom ended up with Manchester United, to varying degrees of success – due to exorbitant asking prices.

However, if they do ditch their interest in Cucurella this summer, they may snub the chance to sign an alternative, despite it being a position Guardiola has asked for help with.

Indeed, ESPN claim the manager may end up entering the new season with Cancelo as his only full-back to play on the left-hand side.

City still have three left-back options

Rather than signing an option they are not fully happy with, they would prefer to keep relying on the Portugal international. If he has to rest, they can use centre-backs Aymeric Laporte and Nathan Ake on the left.

City’s plan of using Cancelo, Laporte and Ake at left-back may be sensible. They have enough cover to cope without Cucurella for now, even though he would obviously benefit them.

After a deal for Ake to join Chelsea collapsed, this could also be the new lease of life he needs.

But Cancelo – who recently changed his shirt number to seven – has certainly earned a starting berth. Maybe one day, he could shift back over to the right when a new left-back comes in. He has done absolutely nothing wrong on his unnatural side, though, so should continue.

Plenty of time for Marc Cucurella to make big move

Whether City could revisit interest in Cucurella further down the line, only time will tell. His contract with Brighton is due to run until 2026.

Turning 24 this week, he has a bright career ahead of him. There is plenty of time for him to step up to a club of City’s stature – but it may not happen this year after all.

Pep wants Marc Cucurella and first bid is ready

Pep Guardiola is a big fan of Marc Cucurella and Manchester are ready to make their first bid for the Brighton left back

Previously a Barcelona youth product, big teams have had faith in Cucurella for years. Brighton are benefiting from his talents for now, though. It could continue to be the case.

READ MOREManchester City boss Pep Guardiola shuts down sensational Neymar swap talk