A newly-released book has revealed that Manchester City had a deal in the pipeline for Arsenal’s Bernd Leno back in summer 2017.
The German goalkeeper, 27, had garnered significant attention over his time at Bayer Leverkusen before joining the Gunners. But Lu Martín and Pol Ballús’ new book ‘Pep’s City: The Making of a Superteam‘ claims that Leno could have joined Guardiola’s Manchester City before they instead opted to sign Benfica’s Ederson.
According to the book, Manchester City sporting director Txiki Begiristain said: “They both fitted the bill. One was more expensive to buy, the other required a higher salary. I left it up to the coaches to choose“.
Ederson, who is slightly younger than Leno, joined City for £35m that summer and has gone onto become recognised as one of the world’s best goalkeepers. City now value the Brazilian higher than the £67m that rivals Liverpool paid for his compatriot, Alisson, in 2018.
Meanwhile, Leno has had a mediocre start to life at Arsenal. After eventually overthrowing veteran Petr Cech for a starting place, he’s displayed a tendency to spill shots which has marred several strong displays.
Ederson (and almost Leno) was a replacement for Claudio Bravo, who endured a disastrous first campaign at the Etihad.
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