According to a report from Manchester Evening News, reports in the Spanish media suggest that Joao Cancelo, who is settling into Camp Nou after his loan move to Barcelona this summer, may potentially join the club from Manchester City for a modest fee of just €25 million next summer.
Cancelo’s Loan Spell At Barcelona So Far
During the January transfer window last season, Cancelo embarked on a loan spell with Bayern Munich. Subsequently, before the start of the 2023/2024 season, the 46-cap Portugal international made the move from Bavaria to Barcelona. Since making the switch, Cancelo has featured in four matches for Barcelona. finding the back of the net twice and providing one assist, across all fronts.
He has been in a rich run of form for the Spanish giants as he averaging 3.0 tackles, 1.3 clearances, 1.3 shots and 2.7 dribbles per game in La Liga. He has also been efficient with his ball distribution after completing 85.4% of his attempted passes in the Spanish top flight (stats via whoscored).
Will Manchester City Boss Pep Guardiola Need To Find A Decent Replacement?
Joao Cancelo is one of the most versatile full-backs in the world, and his permanent departure to Barcelona would require Man City to fill the void. Cancelo is capable of playing on both the left and right sides of defence, and he is also an excellent attacking threat.
The Etihad club do boast several right-back options, such as Kyle Walker, Rico Lewis, and Nathan Ake. Nonetheless, Walker is getting older and has been susceptible to injuries, while Lewis is still a relatively young player. Ake, on the other hand, is more naturally suited to a central defensive role. Despite Pep Guardiola’s team demonstrating their ability to perform well without Cancelo in the latter part of the previous season and in the current one, the situation could potentially evolve into a crisis during critical moments if injuries occur.
Nevertheless, acquiring a fresh right-back would necessitate a substantial financial commitment, leaving uncertainty about City’s willingness to make such an expenditure. Guardiola might also be hesitant to acquire a new right-back if he holds the belief that Lewis possesses the potential to develop into a top-tier player.
Ultimately, if he has confidence in Lewis’s readiness for the challenge, he might opt to provide him with more opportunities. However, if he harbors doubts about Lewis’s capabilities, securing a new right-back becomes imperative to ensure adequate cover for Kyle Walker.