Manchester City have reportedly identified Jean Michael Seri, who is also a summer target for Chelsea, as an alternative for Jorginho.
According to a report by Daily Mirror, Manchester City are now seriously considering alternatives for Jorginho, with Napoli’s £60 million valuation deemed too steep. The Premier League champions have now set their sights on Jean Michael Seri, who is also being tailed by Chelsea for a summer move.
Seri has been a hot property in the transfer market for two successive summers now. Last year, there was severe competition for his services after he played a key role in OGC Nice’s shock third-place finish in Ligue 1 in the 2016-17 season, with a move to Barcelona fizzling out late into the transfer window.
While Nice failed to maintain the same levels this past season, Seri was a standout even though he wasn’t as consistent as the previous campaign. Nevertheless, with 10 assists in 43 appearances across all competitions, the Ivorian continued to be a creative force for the Ligue 1 outfit, which has in turn, brought forth the interest from Chelsea, and now, Manchester City is not all that surprising.
At Chelsea, the need to bolster central midfield options is imperative, with Tiemoue Bakayoko still not looking like the real deal at Stamford Bridge. To compound the problems, Danny Drinkwater and Ross Barkley have proven to be liabilities due to their inability to maintain their fitness levels, with the former set to be offloaded this summer.
As a result, there is an urgent need to sign an industrious midfielder to complement N’Golo Kante, making Seri a viable target. But, Chelsea now face stiff competition in the Ivory Coast international’s pursuit, with Manchester City now emerging as the latest suitors.
The Premier League champions are in the market for a midfielder this summer after the departure of Yaya Toure, especially with Pep Guardiola hinting that David Silva might not be a regular next season. The Manchester City manager’s words suggested that Silva might get phased out over the next few seasons.
With Ilkay Gundogan the only other creative midfielder at his disposal, the need to bolster midfield is somewhat urgent for Manchester City. Jorginho is believed to be their priority target, but Napoli are refusing to budge from their £60 million valuation of the Italian international.
While Manchester City would still prefer signing Jorginho, they deem the aforementioned figure too steep, and are being forced to look for alternatives. Seri is, thus, an ideal alternate option, who will be available for just £36 million, making him a more approachable target, not just for the Citizens, but also for Chelsea, who are known to be operating on restricted budgets of late.
The likes of Arsenal and West Ham United are also showing interest, but Manchester City could easily usurp both of them as well as Chelsea if they decide to make a concrete offer. All that now remains to be seen is whether the Premier League champions firm up heir interest in Seri, but that will depend on their pursuit of Jorginho ending for good.