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Manchester City report: Pep Guardiola plotting audacious swoop for Arsenal star

Pep Guardiola, manager of Manchester City, looks on during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Manchester City at London Stadium on August 07, 2022 in London, England
(Image credit: James Gill - Danehouse/Getty Images)

Manchester City (opens in new tab) are reportedly interested in Arsenal (opens in new tab)'s Kieran Tierney as they look to solve their left-back need.

The reigning, back-to-back Premier League champions wanted to sign Marc Cucurella from Brighton (opens in new tab) earlier in the summer but were unwilling to meet the Seagulls' valuation; the Spaniard ultimately joined Chelsea (opens in new tab).

While right-footed Joao Cancelo has more than proven himself as an inverted left-back – a role which he performed brilliantly once again as City began their title defence with an Erling Haaland-inspired 2-0 win at West Ham (opens in new tab) last Sunday – City lack a left-footed full-back.

That's after Oleksandr Zinchenko left for... Arsenal – who had already signed Gabriel Jesus from City earlier in the the transfer window.

Kieran Tierney of Arsenal celebrates after the Premier League match between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at Emirates Stadium on September 26, 2021 in London, England

(Image credit: Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

For all of his tactical inventiveness – and while left-footed centre-half Nathan Ake can operate there – Guardiola will surely want to have an out-and-out left-back at his disposal.

According to 90min (opens in new tab), City have identified Tierney as one of an array of potential targets.

Tierney – who can also play as the left-sided centre-back in a back three, as he regularly does for Scotland – joined the Gunners from Celtic (opens in new tab) three years ago in a deal worth a Scottish-record £25m.

It goes without saying that any suitors would have to cough up considerably more than that for the 25-year-old, whose current deal at the Emirates runs until June 2026.

And with City consistent in refusing to pay what they consider over the odds for any player – the Cucurella scenario being a perfect recent example – it's hard to see a move for Tierney getting off the ground, frankly.

Zinchenko lined up at left-back as Arsenal beat Crystal Palace (opens in new tab) 2-0 in the 2022-23 Premier League curtain-raiser, but the Ukrainian is expected to move into midfield once Tierney – who came off the bench at Selhurst Park – is fit enough to start.

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Tom Hancock started freelancing for FourFourTwo in April 2019 and has also written for The Analyst and When Saturday Comes, among others. He supports Wycombe Wanderers and has a soft spot for Wealdstone. A self-confessed statto, he has been known to watch football with a spreadsheet (or several) open...