Manchester City are actively seeking more players with the ‘hunger’ to dominate English football in a way not seen since Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United.
Pep Guardiola’s side will today take a giant step towards a fourth Premier League title in five years if they beat West Ham — making it the best run since United between 2007 and 2011.
City have already added striker Erling Haaland to the ranks of their world-class players for next season, but Guardiola is looking for even more, if Financial Fair Play restrictions mean City can’t overpay for players.
Pep Guardiola (third from right) wants to add even more players to his Manchester City squad
League leaders City are seeking a replacement for Fernandinho (left) at the end of the season
Top of the wishlist is a specialist left back and a holding midfielder to replace the departing Fernandinho. ‘I know they are working on that and always thinking,’ Guardiola said. ‘I am not saying it is going to happen, but they have a plan to see what can happen. There are many incredible players around the world who could fit in and play here, without a doubt.
‘The world is so big, a thousand million teams and top talented players as long as they have the special mentality of wanting to win again and again.
‘Every day, never satisfied. The biggest is to find that. Everything is in the head. Every action comes from there.’
Guardiola doesn’t envisage massive changes to his squad but says clubs must always be prepared to replace players who want to leave, as Ferran Torres did in January.
Norway striker Erling Haaland has agreed to join City from Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund
Guardiola has worked hard to rebuild City after the departures of Sergio Aguero, Vincent Kompany and David Silva, and is on the verge of the 10th league championship of his career, having also won three each with Barcelona and Bayern Munich.
‘You can never sit back and think you’ve got a young squad that can stay together for five or six years. It doesn’t happen,’ he said.
‘Situations change season by season because players want to play and be happy. If they have the perception they won’t play, so they have to leave and be replaced.
‘The club always has to look ahead. If five players leave the club you have to identify who would be the next five new players, or which players from the academy can be part of it like Phil Foden.
‘These things have to be considered constantly.’
Haaland’s goal-a-game record in Germany with Borussia Dortmund suggests he has the ruthless streak to suit Guardiola’s ambition. City have still scored 95 league goals this season without a recognised centre-forward.
Not that Guardiola is too concerned about reaching the century with two games left. ‘If we score 99 and win the league, it is still good,’ he said.