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After their two-year European ban was overturned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the 2018/19 Premier League champions are ready to go big in the transfer market.
Pep Guardiola wants the club to sanction the signings of a center-back, left back and replacement for Leroy Sane who joined Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich in a £54.8m deal earlier this month, and the Citizens could also sign another striker depending on departures.
The reprieve given to City by the Court of Arbitration for Sport has saved the club around £200m in lost revenues, TV income, prize money and gate receipts that the club would have otherwise lost had the CAS decided to uphold UEFA’s two-year ban.
City are looking at Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly to fill in the gap left by the departure of club legend Vincent Kompany last summer, with the Etihad outfit also keeping an eye on Leicester City left-back Ben Chilwell, who is also a leading target of rivals Chelsea.
The German manager decided to do a bit of both during his team’s draw against Burnley at the weekend. His front three were all superstars in Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah whereas the backline and midfield had young faces of Neco Williams and Curtis Jones, respectively.
His hope that a mixture of youth and experience will inspire the recently crowned champions to victory didn’t go according to plan when former Southampton striker Jay Rodriguez netted the equalizer on 69th minute and forced Liverpool to drop their first two points at home all season.
The result means that Liverpool, who currently sit at 93 points in the table, need seven points from their remaining three games to match City’s 100 point haul. Though they need to win all of their remaining games to set a Premier League record for most points in a single season.
Consequently, Klopp finds himself in an unenviable position where on one end he has to give chances to club’s youngsters who have waited for their first-team playing opportunity since the start of the season, whereas on the other end he has a record to chase that will etch his squad’s name in history books.
After their 2-1 defeat to Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham on Super Sunday, the Gunners currently sit at 9th in the table, with four points separating them from 7th place Sheffield United.
With the hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League now fully diminished, some members of Arsenal’s worldwide-based fan base believe that the club would do well if it didn’t qualify for next season’s UEFA Europa League.
They believe that with minimal fixture congestion and no cross-European tours on Thursday nights, Mikel Arteta would be in a much better position to rest his squad between games and get the best out of them on Premier League matchdays.
While the argument does have its merits, the absence of European football will be financially costly for the Emirates’ outfit. The potential lack of European games would be a huge blow to an Arsenal side that announced a loss after tax of $34.8m for the 2018/19 campaign.
Goal.com estimates [quoting football finance expert Kieron O’Connor] that the Gunners raked in almost 19m from making it to the last 32 of the Europa League this season. That’s the minimum the club could realistically get if it qualifies for next season’s competition, a scenario which at the time seems far-fetched.
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