CITY Can Can fit the bill for City in Jan­uary?

Manchester Evening News - - CITY SPECIAL - By SI­MON BA­JKOWSKI si­mon.ba­jkowski@trin­i­tymir­ror.com @sp­ba­jko

CITY have been linked with a move for Emre Can as the mid­fielder’s con­tract stand-off with Liver­pool con­tin­ues.

The 23-year-old is ap­proach­ing the fi­nal six months of his An­field deal and a re­lease clause (or lack thereof) ap­pears to be a stick­ing point for a po­ten­tial new deal.

Pep Guardi­ola has come across the player be­fore at Bay­ern Mu­nich – the for­mer Barcelona boss had just ar­rived at the Al­lianz in 2013 when he de­cided he couldn’t of­fer Can the min­utes he wanted and Bayer Lev­erkusen promptly bought him.

Hav­ing had suc­cess in­te­grat­ing play­ers from Pre­mier League sides in re­cent trans­fer win­dows, it is not hard to see the ap­peal of se­cur­ing a player from one of their ri­vals.

Would it be worth it though in the grand scheme of City’s trans­fer strat­egy? Here are a few things to con­sider ahead of the win­ter trans­fer win­dow open­ing.

DOES HE FIT INTO THE SQUAD?

Can ap­pears to fit the pro­file of what Guardi­ola is try­ing to build at City per­fectly. At 23, he has his best years ahead of him. De­spite be­ing a mid­fielder, he can be called on to be used in de­fence when re­quired. With re­lease clauses a ne­ces­sity at Bayer Lev­erkusen and Liver­pool, he clearly be­lieves he can play for a top club. If that am­bi­tion is healthy, would he be happy to wait for his chance if, say, Fer­nand­inho was still first choice next sea­son or he was be­hind oth­ers in a peck­ing order?

Hav­ing al­ready left one Guardi­ola team be­cause of the lack of first team foot­ball, Can will be look­ing for as­sur­ances from the Eti­had.

FREE MONEY VS PRI­OR­ITY PO­SI­TIONS

Get­ting a player at the end of his con­tract would be a steal and cru­cially leave money open for other po­si­tions.

Guardi­ola was clear last sum­mer that it would not be pos­si­ble to re­vi­talise ev­ery po­si­tion at once, hence why he was out look­ing for bar­gains like Dani Alves.

A free trans­fer can end up look­ing price­less if it re­vamps City’s mid­field, but if it is to be a pri­or­ity is he the man to play ev­ery week?

Monaco be­lieve there was strong in­ter­est from the Blues in Fabinho last sea­son, who has al­ready had his head turned once by a move.

DO CITY GO FOR A BAR­GAIN OP­TION IN MID­FIELD OR DE­CIDE IT IS WORTH GO­ING ALL OUT?

City will have six months of un­cer­tainty even if they think they have con­vinced Can to join.

The Ger­man can speak to for­eign clubs from Jan­uary – with Ju­ven­tus and Dort­mund among the clubs re­ported to be in­ter­ested – and can also re­new with Liver­pool be­fore his cur­rent deal runs out. A lot can hap­pen be­tween the trans­fer win­dows and how much foot­ball Can will play at City will likely de­pend on the fu­ture for­tunes of Fer­nand­inho, Yaya Toure, Fabian Delph, Ilkay Gun­do­gan, Aleix Gar­cia and Dou­glas Luiz.

That is a lot of un­known ter­ri­tory, and if City want Can they will not have to be con­vinced enough by him but will have to make him be­lieve that he will be their pre­ferred choice.

Emre Can in ac­tion for Ger­many against Eng­land

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