Pep Guardiola has reportedly identified Juventus centre-back Leonardo Bonucci as his prime objective for strengthening Manchester City backline in the summer transfer window
Guardiola is desperate to bolster his defensive options following a disappointing Premier League campaign for City, as he set his sights on the Bianconeri talisman.
According to The Sun, the Spaniard has named Bonucci his top summer target, although he will face a daunting prospect of getting the deal done as Juventus have not intention of selling their defender.
Guardiola is a long-term admirer of the 32-year-old Italian, whom he praised on several occasions in the past, even calling him an ‘exceptional player.’
Bonucci has been an instrumental part of Maurizio Sarri’s set-up this season, making 34 appearances in all competitions, as he and the marquee summer signing Matthijs de Ligt held Juve’s defense for the majority of the campaign.
Although the perennial Serie A champions would like to keep their defensive cornerstone away from Guardiola’s clutches, the lure of the Premier League could be just a perfect enticement to convince the ex-AC Milan man to come on board.
Pep Guardiola 'wants to bring Leonardo Bonucci to Manchester City'… but Juventus are determined not to sell https://t.co/orpsIIzzZH— MailOnline Sport (@MailSport) March 27, 2020
John Stones has lost his place in the starting eleven and is unlikely to recover it anytime soon, as Guardiola seems to have lost confidence in the former Everton man.
Nicolas Otamendi has proved unreliable and is likely to leave the Etihad at the end of the season, while Aymeric Laporte struggled with injuries for a substantial chunk of the campaign.
The shortage of defensive options has seen the ex-Barcelona manager deploy Fernandinho as a central defender on multiple occasions this term, but the 34-year-old is not exactly a long-term solution to City’s defensive problems.
Therefore, Guardiola will try to land a top-class defender at any cost, with Bayern Munich’s David Alaba also named a potential candidate to reinforce the Citizens’ backline.