Manchester City are looking at bringing in “homegrown” players to maximise their squad depth, sources have told ESPN FC.
Leicester defenders Harry Maguire and Ben Chilwell as well as Crystal Palace’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka have all been tracked ahead of this summer’s transfer window.
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The Premier League champions only had four players classed as “homegrown” in last season’s squad, while all 17 “non-homegrown” places were filled.
Vincent Kompany‘s departure at the end of his contract frees up one spot while defenders Danilo and Nicolas Otamendi could also leave this summer.
Raheem Sterling, John Stones and Kyle Walker were City’s “homegrown” players along with Fabian Delph who is also expected to exit the Etihad before the start of the new season. A centre back will be a priority if Otamendi leaves and City are keen on Maguire although Leicester want around £75 million for the England international.
Guardiola is also a fan of his Foxes team-mate Chilwell but City are unlikely to add a left-back in this transfer window with Oleksandr Zinchenko proving himself as a solid back-up to Benjamin Mendy.
Palace defender Wan-Bissaka has made a big impression in his breakthrough season but any move for a right-back would depend on the future of Danilo.
Guardiola has said previously he would like a core of English players at the club with academy product Phil Foden set to play a bigger role next season. Foden, Kosovan goalkeeper Aro Muric and Spanish defender Eric Garcia are all eligible for the squad as under-21 players.
“Homegrown” means that a player must have been on the books of a club affiliated with the English FA for at least three years before they turn 21 — it does not necessarily mean that they have to be English.