Guardiola rules out Ake move as he says Man City won't buy in January

goal.com, 13 December 2019, 10:00
The Spanish boss claims he has no intention of adding to his squad when the transfer market reopens despite a lack of depth in defence

Pep Guardiola has dismissed a potential move for Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake and insisted that Manchester City will not be doing any business in the January transfer window.

City have endured a frustrating start to the 2019-20 campaign, as they bid to become only the second side in Premier League history to win three successive titles.

Guardiola opted against bringing in a replacement for former club captain Vincent Kompany over the summer, a decision which came back to haunt him when his side played host to Brighton on August 31.

Aymeric Laporte suffered a serious knee injury during the 4-0 victory and is not expected to return to action until well into the new year.

City have, therefore, had to cope with just two natural options in the heart of the defence in John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi, with mixed results.

Guardiola's men have slipped 14 points behind Liverpool at the top of the table, and also trail second-place Leicester by six ahead of a crucial meeting with Arsenal at Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

Fernandinho has been asked to fill in at centre-back on a consistent basis, leaving City short on protection in front of the back four.

Rumours of extra reinforcements arriving in Manchester when the winter market reopens have been swirling, with Bournemouth defender Ake among those being linked with a move to the Etihad Stadium.

Guardiola is content to finish the season with his current squad, however, as he told a press conference on Friday: "The players who start the season will finish the season. No business."

When asked to comment on the possibility of a swoop for Ake, he responded: "No, it’s not an issue."

Guardiola's assistant Mikel Arteta has been touted as a candidate to succeed Unai Emery as Arsenal's next permanent manager, having spent time at the Emirates as a player between 2011 and 2016.

The City boss feels that his fellow countryman is "ready" to take on such a high-profile role, but he had nothing else new to add on the matter.

"You can be 45 years old and not be ready or 35 years old and be ready," said Guardiola. "Only he knows, I’ve spoken about the situation a few weeks ago, there’s no more to add. I said two weeks ago, he’s got two weeks more experience, so he’s ready."

City are sweating on the fitness of David Silva heading into their clash with the Gunners, after he picked up a knock in the 2-1 defeat to Manchester United last weekend.

The veteran playmaker was forced to sit out City's Champions League win over Dinamo Zagreb in midweek and Guardiola is not sure whether he will be back in time to feature at the Emirates.

The City head coach stated: "He’s not fit, yesterday and today he couldn’t train then we’ll see tomorrow. It was a kick on the leg that was painful, not a big issue."

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