Guardiola: City can't compete with Barca or Madrid amid De Jong links


Pep Guardiola believes it's hard for Manchester City to beat Real Madrid or Barcelona in the transfer market.

Guardiola did not reference De Jong but conceded City face a hard task beating Barca and Madrid when it comes to transfers.

Neves, whose Wolves side visit the Etihad on Monday, tends to play as one of two holding midfielders, whereas Fernandinho performs that role on his own in the City line-up.

"Normally when you are involved with Madrid and Barcelona you are going to lose. Winning helps you to be more confident in the next one".

However, Guardiola indicated that "I am not talking about the case with the Ajax player, because he's an Ajax player".

"They defend deep, switch play, control many areas". We are not going to pay £100 million for a holding midfielder.

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo says the 1-1 draw played out between the reverse fixture earlier this season was a crucial moment for his side's belief they belong in the Premier League.

The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss added: "Specifically with Fernandinho's role, it's so hard to find".

The Citizens struggled to deal with the loss of Fernandinho through injury over the festive period and lost three times in the space of four Premier League games. He'll be 34 and he can not play every few days.

"Our wage bill for the players is eighth or ninth or 10th in Europe, so there are eight or nine clubs where the wages are higher than what Manchester City pay".

"We have a limit and cannot spend more so that's why we need to be careful with the players and try next season to see what we can do to improve".

"Goal understands that City have been impressed with the 22-year-old's form so far this season, especially his performances against them in the Champions League, and he remains a viable option for the coming months, "Lee writes".

"I hope towards the end of the season we get a title run-in", said the former Manchester United and England captain in the Gary Neville podcast.

"There are players who can play in that role but, specifically Fernandinho's role, it's so hard to find".

They also want another midfielder in addition to De Jong but Guardiola is adamant that they have no intention of meeting Wolves's £100 million valuation of Neves ahead of Monday's game at home to the Midlands club.