Manchester City submitted a list of 20 senior players to the Premier league last season (2016-17): (Homegrown players marked with *)
Caballero * Clichy, De Bruyne, *Delph, Nolito, Gundogan, Silva, Kolarov, Kompany, Fernandinho, Navas, Otamendi, Fernando, Sagna, *Sterling, *Stones, Toure, Zabaleta.
To this list of 20, they additionally nominated 5 U21 players:
Gunn, Sane, Adarabioyo, Aleix Garcia and Iheanacho to give Pep his 25-strong Premier League squad.
From the senior list of 20,
Caballero, Clichy, Nolito, Kolarov, Navas, Fernando, Sagna and Zabaleta have all been released/sold. (8 players)
They have been replaced so far with 5 players Ederson, Mendy, Bernardo, Danilo and Walker, with Leroy Sane now moving up to the senior list following his 21st birthday to make 6.
Of course Gabriel Jesus was added later as an additional U21 component.
Kolarov and Fernando have effectively not been replaced so far and of the 5 U21 players from last season, Iheanacho has been sold whilst Gunn and Garcia have gone on loan.
So there are currently 5 gaps in our squad and there will be 2 more if you believe Adarabioyo will also go on loan and if Delph is to be sold.
We currently have 14 senior foreign players so Pep can currently bring in up to 3 more of these before the end of the transfer window if he wishes. I believe he will bring in 2.
Pep will surely sign a central defender and another forward before the league starts and most likely they will be foreign and over 21 (Sanchez plus a Veteran CB?)
That leaves 3 spots from last year and as mentioned before, there will be 2 more if you believe Adarabioyo will go on loan and Delph is sold, as is widely
hoped reported. That’s 5.
What we can see is that Guardiola doesn’t care too much about getting 8 homegrown units fitted into the list of 25 senior players.
He will always try to use his maximum quota of 17 foreign signings (Maybe just the 16 this time – time being of the essence) and then together with the homegrown players he does possess, (currently 4) simply make up his 25 using the under 21s.
What this all means, is that just like last season, Pep will have to promote from the ranks of the under 21s to reach his target of 25.
Unless of course, he unwisely opts to go with a reduced squad.
Whether there will be 3, 4 or 5 spots available, the inescapable conclusion to be drawn is that it is not a question of whether or not Guardiola will promote the likes of Foden and Diaz to the Premier League list.
He will have little alternative but to do just that.
It’s the Math!
(Unless he wants to compete in English weather in 4 competitions amid severe fixture congestion with a tiny squad…)
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