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Pep Guardiola's greatest Man City signing named in new list with Erling Haaland only eighth

Pep Guardiola's greatest Man City signing named in new list with Erling Haaland only eighth

There's no place for Haaland in the top five.

Pep Guardiola's greatest Manchester City signing has been named, but it isn't Erling Haaland.

City arguably have the best squad in world football right now, one that has been lauded as one of the greatest ever after winning a historic treble last season.

Erling Haaland played a key role in that achievement, scoring 52 goals in 53 games in all competitions in his first season at the Etihad Stadium. Several other players signed during the Pep Guardiola era made huge contributions too, prompting the question: Who is Guardiola's best City signing?

It's a question that's been answered in a new set of rankings, going through every single player that has joined the club since Guardiola became manager in 2016.

With legendary players like Kevin De Bruyne, Sergio Aguero and David Silva signed before Guardiola arrived, it's not as easy a question as it appears.

The Athletic have addressed it though, with City correspondent Sam Lee ranking all 29 of Guardiola's City recruits.

The rankings have taken into account the value for money of the players and their contributions over an extended period, rather than just picking them purely on quality.

Propping up the list is Nolito, the combative attacker who was one of Guardiola's first but arguably worst signings. The Spaniard looked promising in the opening months of the campaign, but by the end fans were fed up with his poor disciplinary record and limited attacking output.

The likes of Benjamin Mendy, Angelino and Kalvin Phillips have all scored poorly, the latter having played just 911 minutes of football since completing his £42 million move from Leeds in 2022.

Haaland in action vs Real Madrid- Getty
Haaland in action vs Real Madrid- Getty

The top 10 is where things get really interesting, with goal-scoring sensation Haaland only coming in at number eight. That's because, as Lee puts it, "players such as him come alive in the final third while others help City truly play at their best across the pitch."

Holding midfielder Rodri is third on the list and Bernardo Silva second, leaving top spot to German midfielder Ilkay Gundogan.

Gundogan was Guardiola's first signing at City, and considering what he did over the seven years that followed, £20 million was an absolute steal. As well as bringing control to City's midfield and controlling tempo, the German international scored some of the most important goals in City's history, including the title winner against Aston Villa in 2022 and his spectacular 12-second volley against Manchester United in the 2023 FA Cup final.

The full ranking is as follows:

29: Nolito, 28: Benjamin Mendy, 27: Kalvin Phillips, 26: Zack Steffen, 25: Angelino, 24: Sergio Gomez, 23: Scott Carson, 22: Claudio Bravo, 21: Danilo, 20: Ferran Torres, 19: Stefan Ortega, 18: Joao Cancelo, 17: Leroy Sane, 16: Gabriel Jesus, 15: Jack Grealish, 14: Julian Alvarez, 13: Manuel Akanji, 12: Nathan Ake, 11: Oleksandr Zinchenko, 10: Aymeric Laporte, 9: Riyad Mahrez, 8: Erling Haaland, 7: John Stones, 6: Ruben Dias, 5: Kyle Walker, 4: Ederson, 3: Rodri, 2: Bernardo Silva, 1: Ilkay Gundogan

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: Manchester City, Pep Guardiola, Erling Haaland, Ilkay Gundogan, Premier League