Manchester City

Five potential heirs to Kevin de Bruyne at Man City: £100m title winner, Bayern Munich golden boy

Five potential heirs to Kevin de Bruyne at Man City: £100m title winner, Bayern Munich golden boy

Arguably the greatest player to ever wear Manchester City’s sky blue, Kevin De Bruyne is among the greatest players in Premier League history.

Nevertheless, Pep Guardiola’s Treble winners reportedly have one eye on a future without their brilliant Belgian playmaker and are more open than ever to considering offers for the two-time PFA Footballer of the Year, who is 32 years old, injuries are becoming more frequent, and his contract expires at the end of the following season.

Saudi Arabian clubs would be willing to shell out a lot of money for De Bruyne, for instance.

These are five players who Man City may consider when looking for De Bruyne’s successor at the Etihad.

Florian Wirth
Florian Wirtz, the youthful star of Bayer Leverkusen’s undefeated run to the Bundesliga title, has become one of Europe’s most prolific and captivating attacking midfielders.

With eighteen goals and twenty assists for the league winners under Xabi Alonso, the twenty-year-old German international is in great demand throughout Europe.

However, if City is getting ready to let go of De Bruyne, they would be well-advised to go after Wirtz, as the Leverkusen player has the creativity to split defenses and the eye for a game-winning goal to help bridge the gap the former star of Chelsea and Wolfsburg would leave behind in Manchester.

With a market value of approximately £100 million, pursuing Wirtz would probably require a substantial portion of Guardiola’s transfer budget. But City cannot afford to skimp on the player they intend to replace, a nine-year Etihad resident and club legend who has been instrumental in the club’s 13 trophy victories.

Xavi Simons
Not only is De Bruyne a highly talented creative midfield player who has been linked to a potential departure from City, but Bernardo Silva is reportedly a top target for French champions Paris Saint-Germain, who hope to entice the diminutive Portuguese magician back to Ligue 1.

From a City standpoint, PSG’s interest in Silva is particularly intriguing because it is rumored that the Parisians are prepared to offer Dutch playmaker Xavi Simons in exchange.

Only 11 senior games have the 21-year-old Netherlands international played for PSG since he transferred from Barcelona to the club’s academy in 2019. However, over the previous two seasons, Simons has had back-to-back breakout campaigns elsewhere.

The first was in his native country with PSV. Simons was signed by Eindhoven on a permanent contract 18 months ago, but during his one and only season at the Philips Stadion, he scored 22 goals in 48 games and helped the team win the KNVB Cup. As a result, PSG exercised their incredible €6 million buyback option on Simons.

With 15 assists across all competitions this season, Simons’ creative side has been highlighted while playing on loan at RB Leipzig.

Paqueta Lucas
Last summer, City had high hopes of signing Lucas Paqueta, a star midfield player for West Ham, but the proposed £70 million transfer was derailed by an FA investigation into betting irregularities involving the player.

Despite rumors that City was prepared to activate an £86 million buyout clause that will become active in the 26-year-old’s West Ham contract at the end of the current campaign, it seems Guardiola has not given up on acquiring the Brazilian creator.

In the summer of 2022, the 42-cap Brazil international signed a club-record £51 million contract to move from Lyon to the London Stadium. He has also given the Hammers a healthy return on their investment, establishing himself as one of the Premier League’s most accomplished and versatile attacking midfielders and leading the team to victory in the Europa Conference League the previous campaign.

But he’s been hit with FA charges once more, which will hurt his chances of moving this summer.

Musiala Jamal
Even though it may seem unlikely, rumors that Jamal Musiala has turned down Bayern Munich’s offer of a contract extension at the Allianz Arena give hope to teams like City and Liverpool, who are rumored to be major admirers of the 21-year-old.

Musiala, a former top prospect in Chelsea’s renowned academy, joined Bayern in 2019 and established himself as one of the most talented forwards in Europe as soon as he joined the first team as a teenager.

Musiala has made over 150 appearances for the current German champions, scoring 41 goals, despite his youth. He is a skilled dribbler who can score from a range of angles and distances, making him an asset to any attack, even one as potent as City’s.

Bayern will not, however, give a discount if they are persuaded to let go of the player, whose contract is scheduled to expire in 2026; the bidding is expected to begin at £86 million.

Baena Alex
Alex Baena of Villarreal has demonstrated this season that he has the ability to develop into one of the most inventive attacking midfielders in Europe, despite being the least well-known player on this list.

The 22-year-old had a breakout season at the Estadio de la Ceramica the previous season, putting on an impressive display of scoring with 12 goals from 48 appearances and his versatility as a No. 10 who can play on either flank or centrally.

With an astounding 18 assists in 45 games this season, Baena’s ability to set up goals for others has been her strongest suit.

The one-cap Spain young player is rumored to have been scouted by City last year. Though it’s unclear whether Unai Emery, who worked with Baena at Villarreal, will pursue his interest in reuniting with the midfielder at Aston Villa, the Treble winners will face competition from another Premier League team if they hope to acquire Baena, whose contract includes a €60 million release clause.

About the author


Leave a Comment