Pep Guardiola contacted Paris St-Germain midfielder Adrien Rabiot recently in an attempt to persuade him to move to Manchester City when his contract expires next summer, reports from RMC, a French media outlet claim.
The 23-year-old rejected numerous offers of a new deal with the French champions during the summer and is set to leave the Parc Des Princes next year as a free agent.
However, City face stiff competition from Barcelona who were willing to up the ante before the summer transfer window closed. Reports from Spain during August claimed the Catalans were considering a bid of €45m for the France international.
The defending Premier League champions were quiet during the summer. Their transfer activity stopped with the signing of Riyad Mahrez, 27, in a £60m deal from Leicester City. That they remain unbeaten this season indicates Guardiola doesn’t believe there are many players who can improve his squad.
However, the departure of Yaya Toure, 34, while expected left a hole in his squad which has yet to be filled. Earlier this year, former Barcelona midfielder Xavi observed that the youngster was ready to fill that role for the Blaugrana which comes as a high recommendation.
Rabiot hit the headlines in the summer when he refused a place on France’s standby list for the World Cup, having been omitted from Didier Deschamps 23-man squad for the finals in Russia. An angry exchange of words in the media saw him overlooked for the matches against Germany and Netherlands this week with a recall to the side unlikely for some time to come.