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Pep Guardiola desperate to sign Premier League star as Manchester City await Kevin De Bruyne injury update



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Lucas Paqueta has emerged as a priority signing for Pep Guardiola as Manchester City await results of a scan on Kevin De Bruyne’s recent hamstring injury, as per reports.

De Bruyne was hauled off within five minutes of City’s Premier League opener against Burnley on Friday as an Erling Haaland brace and a strike from Rodri sealed the three points for the Premier League champions.

Guardiola admitted after the game that De Bruyne could face a significant time on the sidelines as the Manchester City boss awaits an update on the extent of the Belgian midfielder’s latest injury setback.

“We’ve lost him (De Bruyne) for a time. We have to reflect and talk to the doctors and physios about what happened. He has to be relaxed, recover and come back. He was feeling really good and playing really good,” Guardiola said on Friday evening.

Having played through hamstring pain in City’s treble run-in last season, De Bruyne was forced off with injury for the second time in a Champions League final in his side’s 1-0 win triumph over Inter in Istanbul in June.

After losing Ilkay Gundogan to Barcelona on a free transfer in June, Manchester City are in the market for an attacking midfielder after securing the arrival of Mateo Kovacic from Chelsea for £30 million earlier in the window.

City are negotiating a deal with West Ham for Lucas Paqueta, who is high on Guardiola’s list of potential replacements for Gundogan. The Hammers are believed to have set an asking price north of £85 million for the 25-year-old, who is keen to work with Guardiola at City.

According to David Ornstein of The Athletic, De Bruyne is set to undergo a scan to determine the full extent of his hamstring issue on Monday as Manchester City prepare for a midweek UEFA Super Cup clash with Sevilla in Greece.

Moreover, as per Alex Crook of talkSPORT, City are set to step up their pursuit of Paqueta as Guardiola views the Brazilian as a priority signing, especially given the European champions could lose De Bruyne for a significant period.

De Bruyne’s injury could give West Ham a strong negotiating hand as they aim to get the best possible deal for a player they are not optimistic of keeping amid interest from the Etihad Stadium, with just over two years left on Paqueta’s current deal at the London Stadium.