According to Goal, Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is already looking to build for the future, with the Catalonian reportedly interested in young starlets Julian Weigl and Fred as possible replacements for Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho.
Fernandinho’s current deal was set to expire at the end of the season - which would have allowed him to speak to clubs overseas in January - but the 32-year-old is said to have signed a contract extension with City which should keep him at the club until 2019.
However, Guardiola is looking to explore his options for a future replacement for Fernandinho, with Yaya Toure’s contract set to expire at the end of the season where he will be allowed to depart the club as a free agent.
It is understood that the City board decided this year that a new goalkeeper and the strengthening of their defensive line was the priority for the current campaign, while they’ll look to address their options in midfield come 2018.
City will look to move for a new holding midfielder in the summer once Toure’s current deal expires, where Borussia Dortmund’s Weigl and Shakhtar Donetsk’s Fred are at the top of Guardiola’s wish-list.
Guardiola is said to be a big admirer of Weigl and was keen on bringing the 22-year-old to the Etihad back in 2016 during the former Barcelona boss’ first season in the Premier League, but that move did not materialise.
After playing Donetsk twice already in the Champions League this season - losing on one occasion - a number of their players including Moreno, Bernard and Taison impressed, but it was 24-year-old Fred who stole the limelight and is the man who Guardiola will possibly look to bring in.
It is believed that no decision has been made on who City will look to acquire, but with Fernandinho’s age, although he has been a stand-out performer for City this season, and Toure’s contract predicament, City will definitely look to bring in a holding midfielder for the 2018/19 campaign.
City have been in astounding form this season, where they find themselves sitting 13 points clear at the top of the table after winning 17 games on the bounce, the best start to a Premier League season ever.
They will travel to St. James’ Park in their next league match when they face Newcastle on Wednesday night.