Manchester City are reportedly weighing up a £45 million bid for former Arsenal man Ismael Bennacer after making an approach to the AC Milan midfielder.
As reported by The Sun, Ismael Bennacer is the subject of interest from Manchester City. The Premier League champions have established contact with the former Arsenal midfielder, who could cost around £45 million, over a possible move in the summer transfer window.
Bennacer spent his formative years with French club Aries before joining Arsenal towards the end of his youth career. However, the player could never establish himself as a regular for Arsenal, making just one appearance for the Gunners’ first-team before joining Empoli. It is in his two years with Empoli that the Algerian finally started developing as a promising midfielder.
Last summer, AC Milan snapped the former Arsenal man up, and he has become a regular after the initial settling in period, turning out 23 times for the Rossoneri so far this season. His progress seems to have been duly noted by Manchester City, who are interested in signing Bennacer this summer.
Much of the rumours surrounding Manchester City have concerned centre-backs, and for right reasons. However, considering that Fernandinho is in the twilight of his career, City do need to sign a midfielder to replace the Brazilian in due course, despite the presence of Rodri in the squad.
Manchester City were briefly linked with Miralem Pjanic, who could be an option to play the no. 6 role, but Bennacer would be a more natural replacement for Fernandinho. And, it looks like the Citizens are serious about their interest in the former Arsenal midfielder, having contacted his entourage over a possible move in the summer transfer window.
Bennacer, though, will not come cheap, with the report suggesting that AC Milan value him at £45 million. However, if Pep Guardiola wants the 22-year-old at the Etihad, a move could be sanctioned in the summer transfer window, as Manchester City look to return to the summit of English football while making a charge for European supremacy, provided their ban is lifted.
What now remains to be seen is if Manchester City follow up with their interest in Bennacer with a formal bid in the summer transfer window. It will be interesting to see if the player returns to the Premier League after failing to make a mark at Arsenal.