Pep Guardiola has contacted Milan midfielder Ismael Bennacer with Manchester City primed to launch a €50million bid.
The Algeria international has resurrected his career in Serie after he failed to make the grade during the course of a two-year spell in north London with Arsenal.
Indeed, Bennacer made just a solitary senior appearance during a League Cup defeat at Sheffield Wednesday before he was loaned out to Tours by Arsene Wenger.
The gifted playmaker subsequently moved to and excelled at Empoli last season and earned himself a move to San Siro where he has enjoyed another reputation enhancing campaign, despite Milan’s struggles.
City are on the brink of surrendering their Premier League title to Liverpool and although their spending power might be limited this summer, Guardiola is already making plans to rebuild a squad capable of challenging Jurgen Klopp’s relentless winning machine.
According to RMC, Guardiola has already spoken to the 22-year-old and outlined his vision for the player, who could team up with his compatriot Riyad Mahrez at the Etihad Stadium.
Despite failing to make an impact at Arsenal, Bennacer harbours no ill feeling towards his former club and earlier this week credited the likes of Mesut Ozil and Santi Cazorla with having a major impact on his career.
‘I arrived in England in July 2015, then stayed in a hotel for the first two months because I didn’t want to live with a family I didn’t know,’ he told La Gazzetta dello Sport magazine Sportweek.
‘I was 17 years old and couldn’t live on my own, so my sister came to live with me, then the girl I’d been dating since school who in England would go on to become my wife.
‘Finally, in September, I got some time on the pitch, but I was thrown on after two other injuries against Sheffield, played wide left in a trident attack, which I had never done before. I felt incredible pressure and wasn’t sure what was going on.
‘I never played again after that, but I have no regrets, as I still got to train with important players like Mesut Ozil and Santi Cazorla. I had four years left on the Arsenal contract, but I had to be at a club where they really wanted me.
‘I didn’t know Empoli, but I accepted a move down from the Premier League to Serie B because they were the club who wanted me the most. I did the same when deciding on Milan – I chose them for their history too, but also because it was the best project for me.’
Follow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
For more stories like this, check our sport page.
Source: Read Full Article