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Manchester City’s chief executive Ferran Soriano has revealed Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci encouraged the club to make a move for him in the summer transfer window.

The Italy international is one of the finest defenders in world football and was linked with a potential exit prior to the 2016-17 season.

According to Soriano, the prospect of working with new City boss Pep Guardiola was one that excited the 29-year-old.

“At the moment there are a lot of players that want to play under Pep,” he told RAC1 (h/t Ed Malyon of the Daily Mirror). “The Italian central defender [Bonucci] wants to play for him and he called us.”

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Although a deal never transpired, that was not due to lack of effort on the part of either City or Bonucci, according to the chief executive.

“I called the Juventus sporting director and he told me they didn’t want to sell,” Soriano said. “There ended the story!”

Had City been able to get this one over the line, it would have been a remarkable coup for the Etihad Stadium club. Here is a look at why Bonucci is so highly rated:

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