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Guardiola: Signing De Jong was impossible

Guardiola reveals why it was impossible for Man City to sign De Jong

January 26, 2019 By Ali M.
The Spaniard also stated what his side must do if they wish to compete with the likes of Barcelona and Real Madrid in the transfer window.

Man City was one of several clubs interested in Frenkie de Jong. With Fernandinho turning 34 in a few months, Guardiola is in need of a young midfielder who can dictate the play and identified the promising Dutchman as a key target.

PSG was another team keen on adding the 21-year-old to their ranks. However, both sides missed out on his services as Barcelona beat out the competition to land the starlet.

Speaking about the former Ajax ace's move to the Camp Nou, Pep admitted that his side stood little chance of beating the Blaugrana in that transfer saga. The Spanish tactician argues that the prestige the likes of Barcelona and Real Madrid offer trumps that of the Citizens.

Furthermore, the 48-year-old insisted that he holds no grudges against De Jong for snubbing an Etihad Stadium switch. He said (as per Marca):

"I am not disappointed in him [De Jong].

"It is almost impossible to compete with Barcelona or Madrid due to the prestige they have, the league that they play in and because they are incredible clubs.

"Players have to be free to choose [what club they go to].

"If they don't come, it's because they prefer another club; we have to respect it and seek an alternative."

Guardiola also identified something his side must improve on if they wish to become a force to be reckoned with in the transfer window after missing out on targets, adding: "We'll have to be faster and smarter than others. Or bet on young talents."

The reigning Premier League champion's transfer activity this season has been quiet. Riyad Mahrez was their only marquee signing but the team's quest for the treble continues nonetheless.

Aguero and Co. recently booked their spot in the Carabao Cup final and are within touching distance of league leader Liverpool. They will take on Schalke later next month in the Champions League and are well on their way to the FA Cup fifth-round.



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