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Media Watch: City chasing West Ham midfielder?

MEDIA WATCH: Are City chasing West Ham's Declan Rice?

MEDIA WATCH: Are City chasing West Ham's Declan Rice?

Manchester City return to Premier League action on Monday evening at home to Wolves – and the press are already making predictions about how that one will play out.

And no matter how many times Pep Guardiola rules out transfer activity, the rumours persist.

Today, a new name is in the frame: West Ham United’s Declan Rice.

According to the Sun, City are monitoring Rice and believe he could be a long-term successor to Fernandinho.

“West Ham's highly-rated teenager Rice is the player who has caught his eye - despite only signing a new long-term contract with the club last month,” writes Duncan Wright.

“Rice has emerged as one of the country's most promising young players this season after becoming the main man in the Hammers midfield.

“The way he has dominated Premier League matches despite only being 19 years old has caught the attention of Guardiola and his coaching staff at the Etihad.

“They see similarities in the way Rice reads the game and controls play to the influence Fernandinho has on the City side.”

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The theme of finding a successor for Fernandinho is picked up by the Manchester Evening News’ Daniel Murphy, who has suggested five potential midfield targets…including Tanguy Ndombele.

“Tanguy Ndombele is a name that many City fans will already be familiar with after playing a blinder at the Etihad,” he writes.

“When French side Lyon travelled to Manchester for the first round of Champions League games it was expected to be a routine win for City. Instead they slumped to a 2-1 defeat and Ndombele played a massive role in his side's victory.

“Then throughout the season the 22-year-old has continued to impress in the middle of the park. In a team in which other promising players have been dropped due to a lack of form, Ndombele has remained consistent. Despite coming in for some criticism from his manager he has appeared in all but two games this season.”

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Meanwhile, former Scotland midfielder Gary McAllister says the fight for the Premier League title will go to the wire.

Speaking to Sky Sports, McAliister, who spent two years at Liverpool, says it’s difficult to see where City or his former side are going to drop points. 

"[Liverpool] losing to City, I'm not going to say it was a surprise," said McAllister. "I thought it was a fantastic game - watching the level of quality from both teams. It could have gone either way.

"Then there's a disappointing result against Wolves in the cup, but Liverpool go to Brighton at the weekend and they have to get that run again.

"I think it's going to go right to the wire. What I can see is both City and Liverpool going on big extended runs again. I just see it's difficult for teams to beat them."

Looking ahead to Monday’s game and the Express’ Ben Pringle has had his say on how City should line up on Monday.

“Oleksandr Zinchenko and Phil Foden were also on the scoresheet but are both more likely to drop to the bench with Fabian Delph and Bernardo Silva returning,” he writes.

“Fernandinho will replace Ilkay Gundogan at the base of midfield while Kevin De Bruyne is fully fit and will hope to start against Wolves, giving Guardiola a welcome dilemma.”

That’s all for today’s Media Watch – but stay with us throughout the day as we bring you full coverage of Pep’s weekly press conference where he’ll be discussing Monday’s big game.

Get your tickets for the game against Wolves now!

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