Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has acknowledged that Tottenham Hotspur rejected four bids for Harry Kane during last summer’s transfer window.
Kane was earmarked as the prime striker target for the Premier League holders, but it was always an uphill battle to convince the north London club to sanction his sale.
The Cityzens prioritised the signing of the England international for several weeks but ultimately pulled out of the pursuit with Spurs refusing to negotiate.
Speaking ahead of the Spurs game this evening, Guardiola admitted that the club had multiple bids turned down for the striker, but he was not aware of it.
The Spanish tactician added that there was uncertainty over the strength of the squad, but he never expressed his frustration towards the club’s hierarchy.
He told reporters via Goal: “Now you can say, ‘Harry Kane didn’t come and everything is going well’ but at the time I didn’t know it.
“We tried, but Tottenham were clear that it was not going to happen. When that happens two, three, four times, it’s over.
“After that, we saw the squad and we were not sure. We then lost at Spurs and against Leicester in the Community Shield.
“I never was disappointed in what the club cannot do in the transfer market. I’ve never created a fire here. When we have some talks and we cannot agree, we do it internally.”
The Cityzens started the campaign in the worst possible fashion, losing the Community Shield to Leicester City before suffering a 1-0 defeat in their league opener.
This led to suggestions that they may pursue a new centre-forward. However, the Mancunian giants did not look for alternative targets before the deadline.
The club eventually signed a striker last month in River Plate’s Julian Alvarez, who has been dubbed as the new Sergio Aguero for his work rate and goalscoring exploits.
Alvarez has been loaned out to the Argentine heavyweights until the summer, and there is talk that the deal could be extended until the end of the calendar year.
The 22-year-old has become a regular for Argentina amid his superb scoring displays. He could boost his prospects of World Cup selection by staying at River Plate.
The final decision may rest upon the Cityzens. Regardless of what happens with Alvarez, the club could pursue another marquee striker during the next transfer window.
Kane appears no longer on their radar after what has been an underwhelming season. The England captain has netted just five goals from 21 league outings.
Guardiola’s prime objective will be on winning silverware. He will hoping that his team can avenge the disappointing opening day loss to Spurs today.
The fixture has not been favourable for City over the last few years. They have won just one of the past five league meetings, suffering three defeats.
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