Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola could be forced to look to Antoine Griezmann should Alexis Sanchez complete his move from Arsenal to Manchester United, according to Don Balon.
The Chilean star has been on the list of Guardiola’s most-wanted for quite some time now, but multiple reports, among which Sky Sports, put Manchester United as the main favourite to sign him. The reports suggest United have offered Arsenal a much more lucrative compensation for losing their key player and are in the final stages of completing the deal.
The Catalan boss is well aware that this would strengthen his main title-challengers this year, but has reportedly opted to look elsewhere rather than obstruct the Chilean’s move. The Citizens are hardly in need of more attacking power as they are topping the charts on most scored goals this season and are comfortably sitting in pole position with a 15-point lead.
But Guardiola expects the club to address his most urgent need of a new centre-back and a defensive midfielder and perhaps Griezmann is signal of intent for more than just this season.
The Atletico Madrid front-man has been in fine form this season, having scored eight goals and assisted on seven occasions in all competitions. And Guardiola may deem the French international to be an excellent alternative and cover to David Silva who has been dealing with personal issues as of late.
The thing is Griezmann, who has also been targeted by Barcelona and rivals Manchester United, will turn out to be more costly in terms of transfer fees. Atletico have planned things well, having inserted a £100-million release clause into Griezmann’s contract.
But it is no secret that Guardiola has been a huge admirer of the striker’s talents and might be very willing to splash the cash to get him as this could also damage United's chances of further strengthening their squad. The Catalan will be in a favourable position to sign him should he decide to launch the bid as Barcelona are short of resources following the record-fee arrival of Philippe Coutinho from Liverpool, while United have turned their eyes to Sanchez.
Griezmann’s current contract with Atletico Madrid stretches to 2022.
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