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February 19, 2017
Manchester City have reportedly approached Celtic regarding the cost of signing the Scottish side’s star striker, Moussa Dembele. City are said to be vying with Real Madrid for the gifted French attacker after the Spanish giants also made contact with Celtic.
The report comes from Get French Football News and details how both the Citizens and Los Blancos have been showing strong interest in 20-year-old Dembele:
According to sources contacted by Get French Football News, a prominent member of Real Madrid’s scouting team was in contact for Moussa Dembele on Friday. The individual, who has a background in scouting South America, asked about the player’s plan for the summer.
The other side to make contact in recent days is Premier League giants Manchester City, who made an approach to ask about financial details. No negotiations of note have yet occurred between any relevant parties, but one thing is for sure, Dembele will be one of the hottest properties on the market in the summer.
Interest in Dembele has been growing at a rapid rate recently. The GFFN report also noted how Premier League leaders Chelsea made an offer on deadline day of the winter transfer window.
Yet the Blues are far from the only interested party. Nor are City and Real, not with Bayern Munich also ready to spend as much as £30 million to tempt Celtic into a sale, according to Tom Hopkinson of the Sunday Mirror.
A lengthy queue of big-name clubs is forming to try and sign Dembele.Ian MacNicol/Getty Images
A report from John Cross of the Daily Mirror has confirmed Los Merengues’ interest, while also noting how City and fellow Premier League sides Arsenal and Liverpool are in the mix.
The queue is building for Dembele, but the young and gifted Paris-born striker merits the attention. He has elevated his game considerably since joining Celtic from Championship side Fulham last summer.
Under the watchful eye of former Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers, Dembele has scored 24 goals across all competitions, per WhoScored.com. His pace, technical acumen and cogent movement would fit perfectly in the fluid style of play City manager Pep Guardiola is preaching in Manchester.
Guardiola hasn’t appeared satisfied with his options at striker this season, despite the presence of the prolific Sergio Aguero. The Argentinian was even benched recently in favour of young Brazilian Gabriel Jesus.
Gabriel Jesus’ arrival proves Guardiola will continue refreshing City’s attacking options.Catherine Ivill – AMA/Getty Images
However, 19-year-old Jesus’ foot injury means Aguero will be back in the fold. It also means Guardiola will continue assessing new options like Dembele to fit in a swift and rotating, new-look forward line next season.
City Ready Impressed with Fulham Prospect
One other young star catching Guardiola’s eye is Fulham’s 16-year-old left-back, Ryan Sessegnon. The London native is thought by City to be good enough to cut it in the Premier League, according to Alan Nixon of The Sun.
Sessegnon has reportedly convinced Guardiola he can thrive at City.GLYN KIRK/Getty Images
Nixon also noted Tottenham Hotspur have shown interest in the exciting prospect valued at £8 million by Fulham. However, Guardiola is ready to move decisively this summer, per Nixon: “Pep will get the cheque book out as City believe Sessegnon could play for them immediately because of his outrageous potential. The Etihad outfit know left-back is a problem area and rather than sign a more experienced player, they could have the answer in a teenager.”
City and Guardiola are said to already be plotting ways to replace veteran Gael Clichy ahead of next season. The 31-year-old former Arsenal man’s contract runs out this summer, and City are considering AS Monaco’s Benjamin Mendy as a replacement, per ESPN FC.
However, Sessegnon could appeal more to Guardiola, a manager determined to make City’s squad younger, having already signed youthful stars such as centre-back John Stones, forward Leroy Sane and Jesus.
Clichy looks destined for the exit at City.Clive Mason/Getty Images
Landing both Dembele and Sessegnon would accelerate the Citizens’ attempts to refresh their ranks and become a team more adept at playing the game the way Guardiola wants it played.