Blank cheque leaves Real Madrid vulnerable to Man City raid

Manchester City are so keen to turn themselves into a club that regularly wins the Premier League, as opposed to every other year, that they’ve reportedly handed manager Manuel Pellegrini a blank cheque to turn them into such a force.

In addition to wanting domestic dominance, City’s chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak also believes that European success isn’t too much to ask for either.

City were expected to give their squad a distinctly British feel this summer, but with those competition demands now set, their Chilean manager may decide against such a policy.

Here’s three players that Pellegrini, whose is 11/4 to win the Premier League title next season, could consider spending his bounty on:

Gareth Bale

If he were to go British, Pellegrini may as well set his sights on the best player from the home nations, who just so happens to be coming off a rather prickly season for Real Madrid.

Bale suffered a torrent of abuse from the Bernabeu fans during a campaign in which he couldn’t quite live up to the standards set in his debut. A hefty offer for the Welshman may well be enough for Madrid to part ways with their winger.

Paul Pogba

The French midfielder has long been considered a Man City target, but could become the subject of an actual bid now that the club’s entire safe seems to be at Pellegrini’s disposal.

Pogba would add serious quality to a central midfield often criticised by the media this season, with Fernando and Fernandinho failing to adequately impose themselves on the division in the way it’s imagined the former Man Utd man would.

Marco Verratti

Pogba’s success in Juventus’ midfield came when playing alongside Andrea Pirlo, who threaded passes from his famous deep-lying position.

So it would make sense for City to pair Pogba up with a similar type of player at the Etihad, with the man earmarked to replace the great Italian in the national side a logical choice.

Verratti is reportedly being courted by Los Blancos, but if City want to displace the Spanish giants at the sharp end of the European pyramid, then muscling in with financial might needs to be their modus operandi.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.