‘We were quite close a few months ago… but now it is a little bit different’: Pep Guardiola reveals Leroy Sane was set to sign a new contract at Man City but talks have since stalled
- Pep Guardiola reveals Leroy Sane was ‘close’ to signing a new deal months ago
- The Manchester City manager admits the Sane situation is now ‘different’
- Sane has been linked with a move to Bayern Munich but City want £135million
Pep Guardiola revealed Leroy Sane looked likely to sign a new Manchester City contract before performing a U-turn.
Sane, who has two years left on his current deal, is Bayern Munich’s top target this summer and the Bundesliga champions have been open about their desire to land him.
City would expect to recoup upwards of £135million if they sell the winger, making him one of the most expensive players of all time.
Pep Guardiola reveals Leroy Sane was ‘close’ to signing a new contract a few months ago
Guardiola is none the wiser as to whether the Germany international will remain at the Etihad Stadium and Sportsmail understands City will not look to sign an immediate replacement should he leave.
The Spaniard claimed that Sane had appeared ready to pen fresh terms last month before their tour of Asia but the prospect of that now appears bleak.
‘What (sporting director) Txiki (Begiristain) sent me two or three weeks ago, it was quite close. Now it’s not,’ Guardiola conceded. ‘I want players who want to stay because it’s impossible for me as a manager to convince a player to do what we want to do when his head is away from here.
The Manchester City manager admits the Sane situation is now ‘different’ to a few months ago
‘The player didn’t tell me anything about wanting to leave, so that is the only reality I have. If he knocks on the door and tells me he wants to leave then we are going to speak with the club.
‘We want him to stay here because we try to extend the contract for more than one year. We were quite close a month ago and now it’s a little bit different but that’s the reality – I can’t say any more.’
Guardiola became the second City official in 24 hours to disagree with Jurgen Klopp’s comments about the club’s spending.
The Premier League champions face Liverpool in the Community Shield on Sunday after Klopp suggested they – along with Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid and Barcelona – live in a transfer ‘fantasy land’.
Klopp insisted he was not criticising City, or jealous of their financial muscle, but Guardiola followed chief operating officer Omar Berrada by refuting the German’s claims.
‘Does it bother me? Of course it bothers me because it’s not true that we spend £200m every window,’ Guardiola said. ‘That is not true. They are Liverpool, it’s not a small team, it’s Liverpool.’
Guardiola asserted that City’s net spend was £17m last summer, the £60m capture of Riyad Mahrez offset by a number of player sales.
The 23-year-old has struggled to hold down a regular place in Pep Guardiola’s starting XI
City – who signed Rodri for £62.8m from Atletico Madrid – are currently working on a deal to land Juventus right back Joao Cancelo, which would see Danilo go in the other direction.
‘Two seasons ago when we spent a lot it’s because I took over a team with 10 or 11 players aged 30 or over so I had to do it,’ he added. ‘Today clubs cannot spend a lot of money every year.
‘We bought one player (Rodri) this season and Angelino, who we paid the buyback clause for. Jurgen is a class manager, a top manager. It is an incredible challenge for me when I face his teams.
‘His message is always in a positive way, the way he plays, his behaviour, his smile, hugging. I think it’s so good for football. His message is always in a positive way – sometimes with some exceptions – but most of the time it’s good.’
The Premier League champions are still feeling the effects of a fortnight tour of China, Hong Kong and Japan, according to their manager, and are not yet ready for the season.
‘Pre season starts now,’ Guardiola said. ‘One game a week, a lot of training sessions. In China you start to run but now we start to fix what we believe we have to fix. We’ll be in a good way. The physical condition is still not the best.’
City are working on a deal to get Joao Cancelo with less than a week until the window closes
Get your FREE Premier League Fixtures Guide in association with Sky Sports, only inside Saturday’s Daily Mail.