Manchester City recently sold Oleksandr Zinchenko to Arsenal, leaving them without a natural left-back just two weeks before the start of the Premier League season. The 25-year-old had to cut his pre-season tour short to finalise the move to Arsenal, so City may have been undecided whether to let him go.
The defending champions are planning to bring in Marc Cucurella from Brighton & Hove Albion but had an opening bid rejected, so City will have to up their offer by a significant amount to land his signature. The Seagulls want £50m, but Cucurella wanting a move could force them to cash in for less.
Where will Manchester City finish in the Premier League this season?
5th or lower
The 24-year-old has made 38 appearances for Brighton, scoring one goal with two assists, and possesses all the qualities Pep Guardiola looks for in a left-back, but City have left this so late. The Sky Blues won the title just months ago and have overseen a summer exodus of players, so this is uncharted territory.
In response to Fernandinho (free transfer to Athletico Paranaense), Gabriel Jesus (£47m to Arsenal), Raheem Sterling (£50.6m to Chelsea), Oleksandr Zinchenko (£32m to Arsenal) leaving, City brought in Kalvin Phillips (£44m from Leeds United), Erling Haaland (£54m from Borussia Dortmund) and Stefan Ortega (free transfer from Aminia Bielefeld).
Jack Grealish, Cole Palmer and James McAtee could be internal solutions to Sterling’s departure while Cucurella is likely to replace Zinchenko, but City have been sloppy in negotiations as they could start the season with only Joao Cancelo in the makeshift role unless they put in an improved bid.