"If you wait by the river long enough, the bodies of your enemies will float by" - Sun Tzu - or maybe it was Khaldoon?
That’s a decent summary imo, although I do think we will go for Grealish regardless. I think we’d be fairly confident of unloading one player to make room for him, if we had to - Mahrez for example, assuming Raz and Kev renew.I feel like contract renewals could be more important than actual incomings this summer.
Aguero and Dinho look to be on their way out (although I suspect that performances like Everton may force a change of plans where the latter is concerned). Haaland is undoubtedly our target to replace Sergio, whilst a potential Dinho replacement could be Zakaria, Locatelli, Bennacer, Douglas Luiz... the list goes on.
There are 4 urgent renewals for Txiki to sort out: Stones (2022), KDB, Sterling and Jesus (2023). If any of those 4 don't renew, we'd have a situation to address in the market. If we don't sort out a new deal for Stones it will be a colossal fuck up. Jesus shouldn't be difficult either, considering his relatively low wages.
I have a theory that our interest in Grealish may be somewhat dependent on one of Kevin or Raz failing to agree terms and deciding to move on - I don't think that's likely, but to replace either one you need a top player, and to have a chance at signing a top player you really need to establish interest early on.
Mahrez also expires in 2023, but I doubt there's any circumstances where the club extends a 30 year old winger's deal, despite his great form. I think he'll stick around unless we get an offer too good to refuse (in which case, enter Grealish) or we need to move him on to sign Messi.
Messi is an odd one, I've become less and less confident about his signing as Barca's form has improved. I fully expect them to come back and win La Liga, and with some great young talent, a friendly board, a half decent manager and the possibility of signing Aguero, it's only their financial situation that gives me any hope right now.
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