Guardiola wants to keep Bernardo Silva at City but it could prove to be a tricky task.
According to a recent Robert Lewandowski admission about Pep Guardiola, Manchester City may have a difficult time convincing Bernardo Silva to stay at the club rather than move to Barcelona.
Bernardo’s future at City has become more uncertain in recent weeks, with a flurry of reports linking him to a move to Camp Nou. Xavi, Barcelona’s manager and a former club legend, is eager to add the 27-year-old midfielder to his squad, especially if Frenkie de Jong leaves for Manchester United or Chelsea.
Bernardo is said to be open to a move, having asked to leave City in each of the previous two summer transfer windows. Because of the pandemic-hit market and a lack of suitable offers, he stayed, and while the Portuguese star is much happier at the club now, he is said to still have ambitions to play for Barcelona.
City and Guardiola’s position on Bernardo’s future is the same as it is with all players: if Bernardo wants to leave, he can, provided he receives a suitable offer. However, in this case, City would most likely want to find a replacement as well.
Guardiola said ahead of City’s 2-0 win over West Ham on Sunday that Bernardo could leave, but he’d rather he stayed.
“Sometimes you have to divide our path for the club, sometimes for the players, sometimes for the agent,” Guardiola explained. “The desire of the player is the most important factor. Of course, I’d like Bernardo to stay because he’s a special player for us. But I’m not sure what will happen.”
If Barcelona signs Bernardo, it will cap off an incredible summer in which they have signed Lewandowski, Raphina, Jules Kounde, Franck Kessie, and Andreas Christensen. Polish striker Lewandowski spent two seasons at Bayern Munich under Guardiola, scoring 47 goals in 63 Bundesliga games to help his team win two league titles.
The striker has admitted that Guardiola played a role in his decision to join Barcelona, the club synonymous with Guardiola’s playing style and where the Catalan made his name as both a player and a coach.
“Guardiola’s philosophy and style of caring for and managing the team was like bringing Barcelona to Bayern Munich,” Lewandowski recently stated, according to Diario Sport.
“Xavi is a lot like Guardiola. They were both sixes, and they collaborated. They both have the same perspective on football. With that memory [of working with Guardiola] fresh in my mind, Barcelona was the only viable option. It was excellent preparation.