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Manchester City swoop for versatile Joao Cancelo would land them an exciting option for Guardiola

This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…

According to Calcio Mercato (as translated on their English site), Manchester City are “increasingly more likely” to sign Juventus star Joao Cancelo this summer.

What’s the word?

Reports in recent weeks had claimed that the Portugal international was a summer transfer target for City this summer, but a move seemingly failed to be agreed.

However, Calcio Mercato now claim that negotiations have reached a “turning point”, and that following new talks between both sides, City expressed their willingness to put together a deal without Danilo being involved.

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The report claims that City’s Brazilian right-back had been “holding back the negotiations” and that work is now being done to complete a deal before the end of the transfer window in England.

Versatility

At 25, Cancelo still has plenty of growth to improve. The Portuguese star has already played for some of European football’s leading lights in Benfica, Valencia, Inter and Juventus. As well as the impressive resume of former clubs, the right-back has built up considerable experience playing at the highest level, competing for the biggest trophies domestically and in Europe.

But what Guardiola perhaps will truly appreciate is Cancelo’s versatility. The 25-year-old in his career has played as a (and take a breath here): right-back, left-back, right-midfielder, left-midfielder and right-winger. It probably goes without saying that he could probably do a job at wing-back too. The ability to play on either side will massively boost Guardiola’s options next season.

As well as perhaps allowing Guardiola to concern himself less with having to potentially replace the injury-prone Benjamin Mendy, Cancelo can also give the City boss some food for thought tactically. In games where the Citizens are perhaps less likely to dominate, or face a particularly fearsome attacking threat (Liverpool anyone?), the Manchester side could quite conceivably play both Cancelo and Walker on the same side to offer greater defensive protection on the flanks.

So whilst City may already have two big-money full-backs in both Mendy and Walker, adding another in Cancelo could boost the side in more than just the one position.

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Article title: Manchester City swoop for versatile Joao Cancelo would land them an exciting option for Guardiola

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