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Big Five draw up battlelines for coming season
Paul Pogba (left) of France is among the top picks as Manchester United is ready to pick him for €100 million
Mourinho needs to look for a solid centre-back than chasing Pogba.

Dubai: With the dust settling down on Euro 2016, the English Premier League’s big five are already looking to bolster their squads in the summer transfer window to gear up for a season which promises to see the toughest in recent times.
With EPL newcomers Antonio Conte and Pep Guardiola and the likes of Jose Mourinho, Jurgen Klopp and Arsene Wenger, the transfer window has been full of pulls and pushes among the top class managers and may have not filled their missing gaps yet.
Mourinho’s Manchester United had their biggest catch in Zlatan Ibrahimovic and are still chasing over-rated Paul Pogba while they need a starter center-back alongside Chris Smalling as Eric Bailly, who according to his coach, “has never played in big clubs with major responsibilities and expectations” is still not qualified to be the first choice.
United can channelise their £100m Pogba bid in ending rivals’ race over either John Stones or Leonardo Bonucci who will add more to Mourinho’s first XI than Pogba.
In Manchester City, Guardiola targets revolutionising old City style by “bringing Barcelona to Manchester City” using the help of Yaya Toure, who will assist his teammates in adapting Pep’s tactics.
After Joe Hart’s disappointing Euro display, Pep found himself obliged to consider his goalkeeping options. Barcelona’s Bravo could work as the perfect motive to force Hart to get back in form, which is why Pep is closely watching the Chilean’s future after Bravo expressed frustration over switching goalkeeping roles with Ter Stegen consistently.
With Martin Demichelis released, Eliaquim Mangala rumoured to be surplus for Pep’s men and Vincent Kompany recovering from a series of injures, a move for Bonucci and Stones is exactly what City needs. Like their rivals, City’s defence failed to impress last season and a move to either of those defenders will greatly benefit the Spaniard’s side.
Chelsea, who had the worst title-defence run in EPL history, are after Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly in case Stones’ negotiations fail as John Terry and Gary Cahill may not be Conte’s first options at the back.
Chelsea’s midfield had a plethora of speculation surrounding the future of Nemanja Matic and John Obi Mikel who are allegedly willing to leave the club. A move for N’golo Kante, reportedly sealed, will be effective but won’t be enough as rumours surround Cesc Fabregas’ future as well, who is allegedly eying a reunion with his former boss in Manchester United.
Former Borussia Dortmund manager Klopp was rather active in this year’s transfer window by roping in the likes of Sadio Mane, Joel Matip, Loris Karius and is aiming to sell players such as Benteke and Balotelli, which could be risky.
While Klopp believes that his attacking options are ‘satisfying,’ his frontline could end up lacking the typical striker figure if he does release both Christian Benteke and Mario Balotelli, leaving Divock Origi as his closest and only option to fill that position.
His backline too could be in need of another center-back after Skrtel’s departure to Fenerbache, Toure’s release and Sakho’s 4-week injury.
As per usual, Arsene Wenger was the least active manager among BPL’s top 5 as he eyes Copa America flop Higuain when even his team’s defensive line’s performance was not satisfying either last season.
Wenger needs to replace Per Mertesacker in the back and find a bench warmer for Koscielny as defence is the only position he lacks options in.
Thomas Vermaelen is reportedly delaying his departure plans to West Ham as he awaits a call back to the Emirates Stadium.

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