Guardiola honest over transfer plans that will have Liverpool breathing easier

Date published: Tuesday 19th January 2021 1:40 - Matthew Briggs

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Pep Guardiola says that Manchester City will not sign any new players in the January transfer window.

The Premier League title favourites have found some form this season after a run of five successive victories.

The weekend’s 4-0 demolition of Crystal Palace means they sit just two points behind leaders Manchester United with a game in hand. And they could be top of the table on Wednesday night if results go their way and they dispose of Aston Villa.

Many, including the bookies, believe City are champions Liverpool’s biggest rival this season, despite United rising to the top of the table.

City’s resurgence has been based on a solid defensive line. City currently boast the best defensive record in the Premier League having only conceded 13 goals in 17 games.

Summer arrival Ruben Dias and John Stones are forging a brilliant partnership, while Joao Cancelo has established himself at full-back.

City’s squad has been stretched with Coronavirus issues and a nagging injury to Sergio Aguero.

However, Guardiola has confirmed he has no plans to add to his squad this month.

Guardiola told beIN Sports ahead of Wednesday’s meeting with Aston Villa: “We will not sign any deal during the winter transfer market.

“We did not discuss this, but we will end the season with the players that we have now.”

 

 

With Aguero still missing, Gabriel Jesus has been the only senior central striker that Guardiola has been able to call upon.

Instead Guardiola has opted to use Kevin de Bruyne or Raheem Sterling in a ‘false nine’ position.


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City’s ‘false nines’

“This is one of our ways,” added Guardiola. “There were matches where we needed an attacker but at that time two of them were injured.

“One had been injured for a long time – Sergio Aguero. The other two had the coronavirus.

“That’s why we sometimes play in this way, other times we are forced to do that because of a pressing need.

“It’s an alternative plan, which we can rely on given the talents we have in the various positions.”

City remain on course for an unprecedented quadruple. Guardiola’s men face Spurs in the Carabao Cup final. They are also through to the Champions League knockout phase and take on Cheltenham in the FA Cup fourth round.

READ MORE: Guardiola in touching message to John Stones as he assesses ‘weird season’

 

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