According to a report from Spanish news outlet Fichajes, Manchester City are interested in signing Leicester City playmaker James Maddison in the summer transfer window.
James Maddison, 24, secured a move to Leicester City from Norwich City in the summer of 2018 and has only got better from there. The creative midfielder played a crucial role behind the Foxes’ qualification to the Europa League last season. The 24-year-old has had more of an impact on Brendan Rodgers’ side this time around, with Leicester City aiming to qualify for the Champions League after narrowly missing out in 2019/20.
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A hip injury that kept him out of action through February and March, coupled with a dip in form of late has seen Maddison fail to either assist or score in the last six Premier League games he’s played. Yet, he has registered eight goals and seven assists in 29 appearances, which is an impressive return.
Fichajes report Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is a huge admirer of Maddison, but are set to face competition from Premier League rivals Chelsea for the midfielder’s signature.
Sergio Aguero is on his way out of Manchester City at the end of the season, with the Argentinean striker closing in on a move to Barcelona on a free transfer. Aguero’s departure will leave Pep Guardiola with just one senior striker in Gabriel Jesus, who has blown hot and cold throughout the campaign.
Jesus’ failure to consistently deliver the goods in the injury-absence of Aguero forced Guardiola to tweak his system. Due to an abundance of attacking talents at his disposal, the Spanish tactician opted for a striker-less formation and the change in system has worked wonders for the Sky Blues.
In fact, the Cityzens have preferred a starting XI for their biggest games without a traditional striker leading the line. The likes of Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden, Ilkay Gundogan and Riyad Mahrez have combined extraordinarily well to rip apart teams, both domestically and in Europe.
With De Bruyne having operated really well in the false 9 role in Guardiola’s tweaked system, there is every chance of the Belgian starting the next season in a similar role. That is likely to open up a spot in central midfield, which James Maddison could come in at Manchester City and makes his own.
A creative player, Maddison can operate in various positions across the midfield. Blessed with a great technique and ability to open up rigid defences with incisive passing, the one-cap England international would suit City’s style of play. The former Norwich man’s talent is obvious, and he could unlock his true potential under the watchful eyes of Guardiola.
While Brendan Rodgers would love to keep hold of Maddison, the Leicester City star could be available this summer for a fee of around €60million, the report adds. However, it remains to be seen whether City are genuinely interested in signing the English playmaker or not.