Manchester City could finally land Leonardo Bonucci this summer, a year after he opted against a move to England to play for Pep Guardiola, a manager who described the 29-year-old as one of his all-time favourite players.
In an exclusive for Yahoo! Sport, the controversial but often reliable Duncan Castles (the first to report City’s move for Gabriel Jesus) claims that unless Massimiliano Allegri leaves Juventus at the end of the season, Bonucci is ready to quit following their recent bust-up.
Castles claims that both City boss Pep Guardiola and Antonio Conte, the Chelsea manager who previously worked with Bonucci at Juventus and while in charge of Italy, have approached the centre-back to assess his interest in a close-season move to the Premier League.
Bonucci is said to have ‘encouraged interest’ from the Premier League, and Manchester United could also enter the fray if he opts for a move to England, with Jose Mourinho known to be an admirer.
The relationship between Bonucci and Allegri is said to have soured after their on-field argument during February, despite public attempts to reconcile their differences. Allegri has been linked with both the Arsenal and Barcelona jobs, and if he was to leave Juventus in the summer, it would increase the chances of Bonucci staying put.
City or Chelsea will have to break the world record for a defender if they wish to acquire Bonucci, with the Italian champions expected to demand more than the £47.5 million that City paid to sign John Stones from Everton last summer. The 29-year-old could be seen as a perfect replacement for Vincent Kompany, with his excellent leadership skills and ability to play the way Guardiola likes.
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