Manchester City attempted to secure the services of Italian defensive legend Leonardo Bonucci in 2016 from Juventus, in details revealed by the player himself this week.
The summer of 2016 marked Pep Guardiola’s first transfer window in English football, as City’s newly-appointed manager at the time looked to reshape and reinvent his new squad into the all-conquering outfit that it is today.
One player seemingly earmarked for a historic transfer to Manchester City was the former Juventus central defender Leonardo Bonucci, who has revealed just how close he was to becoming an Etihad Stadium athlete eight years ago.
Speaking to The Sun in an exclusive interview this week, Leonardo Bonucci has revealed to the newspaper that Manchester City made an attempt in the region of £100 million to secure his services from Juventus in 2016, before returning a year later with further proposals.
“In 2016, Man City and I were close,” Bonucci has revealed. “They offered almost £100million to Juventus but together with the club we decided to continue. There were talks in 2017, too, after Juventus put me up for sale… in the end things had to go that way.”
Bonucci continued, “Being managed by (Pep) Guardiola would have been a great achievement because he would have improved me but I can’t complain because I won many trophies, individual awards and the Euros.
“I always let my heart dictate me, that’s why I stayed at Juventus.”
The 2016 market was the same summer that saw Manchester City secure the signing of John Stones in a blockbuster move from Everton – a deal that would go on to excel the England international’s career to heights some may not have anticipated at the time.
In attack, the likes of Leroy Sane and Nolito joined Pep Guardiola’s project, whilst Ilkay Gundogan and Claudio Bravo also came into the Manchester City side to add new flair to their respective positions that had been reimagined by the new coach.
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