Could Manchester City look to restock their defence this summer?

As Manchester City continue their preparations for Sunday’s pivotal game against West Ham, the summer transfer window is looming in the background. It has the potential to be a busy summer window for the world champions.

There is the potential for Manchester City to look to regenerate their squad this summer. Age and the high volume of football played by the world champions may force them to bring younger and fresher legs into Pep Guardiola’s squad. With that in mind, could City’s stocks at centre back be an area the champions look to regenerate? It doesn’t appear to be a position of need for City. With Ruben Dias, John Stones, Manuel Akanji, Nathan Ake, and Josko Gvardiol, all able to play at centre back, they appear well covered in that area. But if one player were to depart, could that change City’s summer plans?

Could John Stones potentially depart the champions this summer?

A recent report from Wayne Veysey for indicates that John Stones is unhappy at losing his starting position in City’s defence. Injury issues have plagued the England international this season. He has only made 16 Premier League appearances across this season. It has been a frustrating campaign for Stones.

It remains to be seen if John Stones is contemplating his future at Manchester City. When fully fit, he is a key player in Pep Guardiola’s setup. But injuries have hampered Stones all season. Due to this, Manuel Akanji, Nathan Ake, and Ruben Dias have become Pep Guardiola’s go-to men in the heart of City’s defence.

If Stones were to seek a new challenge this summer, who could Manchester City potentially target to replace him? While it is a hypothetical scenario at this stage, there appear to be two players who could slot into a role in City’s defence.

Two young defenders appear to be the ideal candidates to come into Manchester City’s defence.

There could be two players that could potentially come in and have an impact at the heart of City’s defence. Everton defender Jarrad Branthwaite and Lille defender Leny Yoro have both been linked with potential moves to Manchester City. David Kent has previously reported for the Daily Mail that City are monitoring Jarrad Branthwaite. A report from Fraser Gillan for TeamTalk indicates that the world champions are amongst a host of clubs keeping tabs on the progress of Leny Yoro.

If Manchester City were to look at regenerating their squad while still contending for honours, both players could fit the bill as possible additions to City’s squad. Branthwaite has shone for Everton this season. Given his strong form and Everton’s delicate financial situation, they may be forced to cash in on their prized asset. Branthwaite does appear to be a defender who could thrive under Pep Guardiola. He is good in possession and has shone defensively this season for Sean Dyche’s side. He is one of England’s top young defensive prospects. If Stones were to depart this summer, Branthwaite could be the ideal candidate to replace him.

Leny Yoro is another player who could potentially slot into City’s squad.

Leny Yoro is a different proposition to Branthwaite. At 18 years of age, he is still a young player developing his game. But his form for Lille has been outstanding since he risen to prominence at the heart of Lille’s defence. His performances for Lille have become one of the most coveted young defenders in football. With his calmness and ability in possession and his superb defensive acumen, he is a player who could develop at Manchester City. It remains to be seen if the champions would move for the young defender. But on closer inspection, he appears a player who could potentially find a place in City’s defence.

A report from Sebastian Stafford-Bloor for the Athletic adds that Yoro’s contract expires in June 2025. Despite Lille’s offering to extend his deal, Stafford-Bloor reports that the young defender has rebuffed their advances as he seeks a new challenge in his young career. That may see Manchester City move for the young defender if the chance arises. Stafford-Bloor adds that Real Madrid is also tracking the young defender.

It may take a departure from City’s defence to see them look to add another central defender.

As it stands, Manchester City is well stocked with centre backs. It isn’t a pressing need for Pep Guardiola’s side. While they are reportedly interested in Jarrad Branthwaite and Leny Yoro, the position doesn’t appear to be a priority.

But if John Stones were to depart the club that would force City’s hand. If that situation did arise, then Branthwaite and Yoro could potentially become two players that City target to retool their defence.

Tags Everton footballinsider247 Jarrad Branthwaite John Stones Josko Gvardiol Leny Yoro Manchester City Manuel Akanji Nathan Ake Pep Guardiola Real Madrid Ruben Dias Sean Dyche Sebastian Stafford-Bloor the Athletic Wayne Veysey West Ham United