Pep Guardiola reveals transfer stance on ‘irreplaceable’ defender

The Spaniard was quizzed on the potential departure

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has promised to ‘fight’ for Kyle Walker amid interest from Bayern Munich, dubbing the fullback ‘irreplaceable’.

The Englishman, now 32 years old, has been strongly linked with a move to the Allianz Arena this summer after dropping out of Pep Guardiola’s first choice XI thanks to a change of system implemented by the Spaniard, which he admitted Walker didn’t fit into.

Asked about why Walker was increasingly left out of the side, Guardiola explained: “The reason why is tactical. It’s not because we lost faith in Kyle”

“He can play coming inside and he has done it many times, but like in the position [against] Liverpool with Rodri and John, he will maybe need time to do it and we don’t have time.”

“He (Walker) cannot do it. To play inside you have to make some educated movements,” he added.

“He has other characteristics. He will always have pace. He will be the fastest in this room at 60 years old.”

Quizzed again on the fate of the Englishman ahead of Manchester City’s pre-season clash with Bayern Munich, Guardiola revealed that he remained very keen to keep hold of Walker despite his flaws, largely thanks to his speed and ability against opposition wingers, as he showed against Vinicius Jr in the Champions League.

What I can say he is a very important player for us, he has a very specific quality, formidable opponent out wide. That quality is irreplaceable. The clubs are in touch, we will fight for him”, he told the media.

Should Walker depart, it is expected that Rico Lewis will be asked to continue his first team development after making his debut last season, with recruitment focus currently looking at the left side of defence.

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Ben Browning

Ben Browning

Football writer and analyst. Long-time writer of all things Arsenal and avid watcher of European football. Happy to discuss all things football over on Twitter.

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