City approach for Busquets?

Wes Hoolahan of Norwich City celebrates scoring his team's third goal with his team mate Steven Naismith during the Barclays Premier League match between Norwich City and Liverpool at Carrow Road

Victory over West Ham followed up wins against Tottenham and Real Madrid in an impressive pre-season for the title favourites and Guardiola believes his side are in good shape for their first match of the Premier League season, away to promoted Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday.

According to Spanish radio station Onda Cero (via the Manchester Evening News' Alex Porter), City are looking to strengthen their midfield following the sale of Fernando and have contacted Barca about potentially buying Busquets.

March believes that the high transfer fees are a reflection of the quality in the league but says Brighton are not intimidated by bigger teams or anxious by the general consensus that they will be relegated after just one season.

There have been five major new signings in Ederson, Benjamin Mendy, Kyle Walker, Bernardo Silva and Danilo, and further additions have not been ruled out.

The Brazil star was a crucial first team player and his departure has handed Barca the unenviable task of trying to replace him, and if Busquets were to leave too, that would be hugely detrimental to the team. It also goes without saying that the player can add value to just about every squad in the world.

With Yaya Toure and Ilkay Gundogan being more attack minded players, the need to sign a defensive midfielder has arisen.

"I think he's close to coming back", Guardiola said.

"Hopefully next season I will be here and we are not going to spend how we have this season".

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"We did it earlier and we are lucky because it would be more expensive now", said the Catalan.

Guardiola voiced an interest in Busquets last summer but a move for the holding midfielder never materialised.

"I saw last season how tough the league is - it doesn't matter who the top teams are".

"I will do my best like I did last season".

"People say in my first press conference we are favourites. It will not be easy but we travel to win the game".

As he would nearly any team in world football, Busquets could improve the engine room of City's side. We have to deal with that and handle that.

"City are probably not going to know as much about us as we do about them. We are going to see at the end of the season what happens, knowing how hard it is".

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