While Chelsea added Romelu Lukaku, the Premier League champions failed to land a centre forward in the transfer window
Pep Guardiola has admitted that Manchester City need a striker after failing to find a replacement for Sergio Aguero in the transfer window.
City spent the summer chasing Harry Kane but couldn’t strike a deal with Tottenham while Cristiano Ronaldo moved to Manchester United after being linked with a late switch to the Etihad Stadium.
Meanwhile, title rivals Chelsea signed Belgian forward Romelu Lukaku in a £98 million ($136m) deal and, ahead of Saturday’s clash at Stamford Bridge, Guardiola said City lack a similar goalscorer.
What’s been said?
“We survived without [Aguero] in a good way in the way we played,” Guardiola told a news conference. “There are two options that we have right now: complaining or saying we have exceptional players.
“We don’t have this weapon that other teams have like Chelsea, United or Tottenham or other teams so we have to use what we can do as a team.
“We don’t have a player to score 25 league goals for himself so we have to do it as a team. This is what we will try this season.”
The bigger picture
City clinched last season’s Premier League title and reached the Champions League final largely without a striker after Aguero struggled with injury and illness.
With Gabriel Jesus becoming more effective as a winger, Ferran Torres has been switched to centre forward while Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling, Phil Foden and Bernardo Silva have all acted as a false nine.
However, Guardiola says he has played with a striker throughout his coaching career and that City must address the position in upcoming transfer windows.
“Always I had a striker in my career – like goalkeepers, strikers are the biggest specialists,” the City coach added.
“I played with Samuel Eto’o, maybe the best or one of the best strikers I ever trained – what a player Samuel was – and [Thierry] Henry. I don’t know if he’s a striker or what he is but Lionel Messi was able to score a few goals. There was [Robert] Lewandowski, Thomas Muller, Sergio here, always I played with a striker.
“We want it as a club because I think the club knows, not for me, it needs in the next years a striker.
“Sometimes it is possible, sometimes not because they are the more expensive ones and it is difficult to find them and when it’s not possible, it’s not possible.”