The Premier League champions, Manchester City, saw the end of their 23-game home winning streak at the Etihad with a draw against Liverpool on Saturday afternoon. As a result, it thwarted the city’s title defense, causing them to drop to second place on the points table behind Arsenal.
City boss Pep Guardiola consistently adheres to the club’s policy of allowing players to leave at their own will when the right offers are presented. Recently, Cole Palmer made a switch to league-rival Chelsea under this policy. However, in another scenario, the club refused to let a key player leave, as disclosed by the player.
Stefan Ortega stays put despite limited playing time in City
Spanish manager Pep Guardiola has transformed his side into an unprecedented dominant force across Europe since his appointment in 2016. Under him, the Citizens have experienced their best period in the club’s history, securing five Premier League titles for domestic dominance.
Last season, they achieved their much-anticipated triumph by lifting the Champions League trophy, concluding the season with a treble win. In October, Pep Guardiola gave the German backup keeper Stefan Ortega his first start of the season against Brighton & Albion in a 2-1 win, resting their first-choice shot-stopper Ederson prior to the international breaks.
Since his move to Manchester in 2022, Ortega has rarely seen playing time, with Brazilian goalkeeper Ederson dominating minutes at the Etihad. The 31-year-old keeper has featured in just 17 games for the City colors. Recently, Ortega disclosed how City blocked his attempt to leave the club, specifically a move to Bayern Munich last year as a potential replacement for Manuel Neuer.
Stefan Ortega revealed, “You could see that when Bayern showed interest, and all parties at Man City said quite openly: “We’re not letting Stefan go now.” In an interview with DAZN.
Which players have left Manchester City this summer?
After a historic season, the Citizens have witnessed several key players departing from the club. Riyadh Mahrez and Aymeric Laporte moved to Saudi Pro League clubs, while midfield star and captain Ilkay Gungogan joined the Spanish champions FC Barcelona, culminating in a glorious time with Manchester City. Finally, Cole Palmer signed for Chelsea for £42.5 million at the end of the summer transfer window.
Nonetheless, the Treble winners swiftly secured potential replacements for outgoing players, such as Mateo Kovacic in the midfield, Jeremy Doku as a winger, Josko Gvardiol in defense, and Matheus Nunes. These acquisitions have strengthened the squad as they aim to defend both the league title and the Champions League.