Man City eye move for Mikel Oyarzabal next summer

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Manchester City have identified Real Sociedad winger Mikel Oyarzabal as a top transfer target for next summer.

According to Eurosport, Oyarzabal has become a priority target for City. The Manchester club are planning to bring him to the Etihad next summer. 

The 24-year old has a £67 million release clause attached to his current contract. City could activate this clause to engage in immediate discussions with his representatives. They followed a similar process to bring Jack Grealish to the club.

City missed out on signing a striker this summer following the departure of Sergio Aguero, who is now at FC Barcelona. Harry Kane was the priority target to succeed Aguero, but City failed to land his signature. Consequently, now it looks like Pep Guardiola could turn his attention to Spanish forward Mikel Oyarzabal. In addition, there is speculation of a possible exit for winger Bernardo Silva next summer as well, and so Oyarzabal would be a realistic attacking acquisition for City. 

What can City expect from Oyarzabal?

Oyarzabal joined Real Sociedad’s youth setup in 2011, at the age of 14. In 2016, he featured in all 38 league matches over the season, as Sociedad finished sixth and returned to the UEFA Europa League after a two-year absence. More recently, Oyarzabal scored the only goal of the delayed 2020 Copa del Rey Final, to help Real Sociedad clinch their first trophy in 34 years after beating Athletic Bilbao.

The Sociedad winger started the current La Liga campaign in red hot goalscoring form. He has scored four goals in the opening four fixtures of the La Liga season, including a brace on the weekend in a 2-0 win against Cadiz. Despite operating mostly from the wing, the technically gifted forward is comfortable operating across the front line.

Oyarzabal is not a natural striker, so he would not be a direct replacement for Aguero. Regardless, his ability to score goals and the attacking versatility that he provides is definitely something Guardiola values. 

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