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Media Watch: Price tags set for ‘top targets’?

RUMOURS: It's claimed City are in 'pole position' for Bruno Fernandes

RUMOURS: It's claimed City are in 'pole position' for Bruno Fernandes

Another day, another ton of transfer gossip...

With no match coverage to fill the pages, newspapers and football websites instead turn attentions to alleged tales of transfer activity, vying to boast 'the latest' on whoever has been linked.

Today's coverage proves no different but thankfully, there are other City stories to sink our teeth into as well - both of which make for very pleasant reading.

Let's start with former City striker Alvaro Negredo's assertion that compatriot David Silva is the greatest player ever to have donned the sky blue shirt.

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“I like so much Aguero, but my preference is David Silva," Negredo told the National.

"People look at the goals; the striker normally draws more passion from the supporters. Aguero scores so many goals. But when you play on the pitch, the striker is important but he doesn’t play alone.

“For me, David is the best [in City’s history]. When you take one No 10 with this quality, this vision, for a striker it’s easier. When David takes the ball, you always think ‘his pass will come, it will come to me’.

“Maybe the striker is more egotistical and it’s always ‘goal, goal, goal’, but David is the player to opens the space when the opponent is closed, always the one with the better solution.

“When I stayed in Manchester, David was the best. And now he continues to be.”

Negredo also reserved praise for Pep Guardiola and the impact he has had on his former Club.

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“Guardiola is maybe in the three best coaches in the world,” he added.

“For the plan on the pitch, the work during the week to prepare for the game, in my opinion he is the best.

“I speak to the people at Manchester City, and they say he’s the best coach. The football of Guardiola is totally different: always wanting the ball, never losing the ball.

“They have 65 or 70 per cent possession, and when you recover the ball there is no energy for the counter-attack. When you suddenly get the ball it’s so difficult.

"It was the same in Barcelona when I played them: it was impossible for a striker to run to close every position and then take the ball. For what? It was so hard.”

Elsewhere, there's praise for another current star as former Academy Head Jim Cassell believes there is still much more to come from Phil Foden – a player he dubbed ‘the Lionel Messi of Platt Lane’ in his youth.

“Phil Foden has been handled brilliantly,” reflected Cassell, as quoted by the Manchester Evening News.

“He is a talent and I am waiting for him to play as he did when he was a nine-year-old.

“He was the Lionel Messi of Platt Lane – low trajectory, could change direction like a rabbit, great touch on the ball.

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“The thing I like about him at the moment is that he’s not fazed when he goes into the first team, he has the ability to nick the ball away from people and invariably, nine times out of ten chooses the right pass.

“He will get to the point soon where he realises he can do a little bit more – that he can attack space more.

“Phil is a classic example of a kid coming through who can play with the senior players. He has it in his locker.

“In the next 18 months if he continues to get opportunities and time on the pitch and nothing goes wrong injury-wise, he will be in the England squad, because he is a talent.”

Switching focus to transfer gossip and the Sun claim City have been set a price of £90million for defender Harry Maguire.

According to Martin Blackburn: “Guardiola is keen to freshen up his domestic Treble winners as City bid to become Europe’s No 1 club.

“England centre-half Maguire is wanted to replace the Belgian defender [Vincent Kompany], who is joining Anderlecht as player-boss.

“But they will need to beat the £75m Liverpool spent on Virgil van Dijk — the world-record fee for a defender — to land him.

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“Maguire, 26, has four years left on his Leicester deal and the Foxes will only let him go for a huge price.

“Boss Guardiola was impressed with Maguire and his ability in possession during City’s win over Leicester at the Etihad.

“The Prem champs are also in the market for a defensive midfielder, with Rodri their main target.

“Atletico’s anchorman, 22, has a £65m release clause and Bayern Munich are keen too.”

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COMPLETE: Ilkay Gundogan finishes off a 44-pass move against Manchester United.

Meanwhile, Sport Witness believe City and United will be given ‘the green light’ to pursue interest in Bruno Fernandes after this weekend’s Cup Final.

Writes Lucas Sposito: “Newspaper A Bola brings a story about it today, claiming that Sporting’s board have come to terms with the fact they are losing the player at the end of the season, but this isn’t a subject to be sorted now.

“The Lions’ intention is to make a record sale with Fernandes, and it’s Manchester City and Manchester United who show up as the biggest candidates for his signing.

“Both clubs are said to be the ‘most serious’ competitors, while the Lions’ idea is to get somewhere around €70m from the sale.”

Finally, Sport Witness’ Nihat Emre Kocaaslan also reports Eljif Elmas’ agent Petar Tomovski has told Italian radio station Radio Marte that City are interested in securing his services.

Apparently, Tomovski said: “Manchester City, Borussia Dortmund and Borussia Monchengladbach called me for him.

“All of them are following the player and they are very impressed with him.”

However, Kocaaslan is not entirely convinced by the suggestion, as he opines: “Fenerbahce president Ali Koc will likely play hardball for potential transfer negotiations as Hurriyet claimed he is prepared to keep Elmas unless someone decides to pay his release clause, which is set at €23m.

“That figure wouldn’t be a problem for Manchester City, but it’s unknown how serious their interest is, or whether they’re being used to hype the situation.”

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Kompany's rocket vs 44-passes: 2018/19's best goal

COMPLETE: Ilkay Gundogan finishes off a 44-pass move against Manchester United.

Title-winners, match-winners, intricate passing moves and bolts from the blue all discussed as our Club Journalists pick out their favourite City goal from the 2018/19 season...

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Media: Defensive reinforcements rumoured

RUMOUR MILL: Joao Cancelo has again been linked with Manchester City.

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Formidable Pep fills Spain with pride

PRIDE: Pep's achievements in England are widely appreciated in his native Spain.

All four English trophies won in a single season, the Premier League’s highest points tally, countless records broken and a bewitching brand of football which caught the imagination of the whole country.

Pep Guardiola’s had quite the impact since he arrived on these shores three summers previous, much to the delight of fans in his native Spain.