The Bi-Annual Bernardo Silva Transfer Saga Continues
While Europe swelters in near-record temperatures, it’s that time of year again, the time when Joan Laporta reaffirms Barcelona’s ambition to pluck Bernardo Silva from Manchester City’s clutches but never really clears up how it is going to happen.
Having managed a good bit of business in snapping up Ilkay Gundogan after the German completed English Football on hard mode by leading City to a historic treble, Barca are back in for his midfield pal, Bernando Silva, who they very definitely won’t get on a free, and probably won’t get at all.
It is no secret that Silva pines for the catastrophic heatwaves that Manchester simply does not get, and like Gundogan, he has also now won everything there is to scoop while at the Etihad, so it may well be he senses the time is right to move on.
He might even want to go to Barcelona, but no amount of briefings to the Barca-centric press will lower City’s valuation which remains considerably out of reach.
In recent years, the Citizens have proven they will not stand in a player’s way should he wish to leave, but equally, they won’t overpay for players and nor will they let them leave on the cheap.
This is the club who have just sold goalkeeper James Trafford that has failed to make a first-team appearance for the Citizens for nearly £20 million to Premier League newbies Burnley.
The only players since Ferran Torres, who depending on who you believe they still haven’t paid for, Barca have got out of City have been free transfers like Sergio Aguero and now Ilkay Gundogan.
Bernardo Silva would likely be worth north of £60 million and the Spanish giants do not have that kind of cash in the drawer.
They do however have Frenkie de Jong who may interest City boss Guardiola, especially if Kalvin Phillips doesn’t do a Jack Grealish and suddenly becomes invaluable to his team.
De Jong is not an obvious Guardiola player though, although nobody thought John Stones was a creative midfielder until March, so what do we know?
It is unlikely City will want to spend big bucks on having to replace Gundogan and Silva in the same window, especially when it is one where the big-name signing will probably be Josko Gvardiol.
That may change if Silva agitates for a move, although he seems like a nice boy and doesn’t have much Joao Cancelo about him when it comes to looking for a stand-up row with Guardiola, even when the manager isn’t being at his passive-aggressive best.
The Saudis seem to have an offer circulating that would bulge Silva’s wallet dramatically, but it would be a major scoop if they were able to persuade a current Champions League winner and one of the best midfielders in Europe to head East at this stage of his career.
While the money may be eye-watering, Bernardo Silva is not a poor man, and while large cash sums may be helping to entice others to the desert Kingdom, Silva is in a much stronger position than all of them when it comes to having the pick of Europe’s elite clubs and sticking around in the best competitions ahead of the Euros and World Cups over the next couple of years.
He is still at the best club of all of them currently too, so he doesn’t actually have to go anywhere which is exactly what’s happened for the last, it feels like, 50 transfer windows.
PSG? Possibly? Paris is lovely unless the fireworks are out and they have the cash and a project that could appeal to him.
The French media are adamant that Silva could be set to team up with his old Monaco pal Kylian Mbappe at PSG, but it is not the best-kept secret in football that Mbappe might not be in the French capital.
Whatever happens next, if he stays, we will be here again in January, then again next summer until he finally leaves East Manchester. Whenever that is, it will be with the fond wishes of the vast majority of City fans.