Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has said that Bernardo Silva “likes Barcelona a lot” amid the ongoing speculation surrounding the attacker’s future.
The Catalan giants are believed to be keen to sign the Portugal international in the latter stages of the summer transfer window.
Bernardo played 64 minutes of Wednesday’s 3-3 draw between Man City and Barcelona, and Guardiola addressed the attacker’s future after the friendly encounter.
“I’m no one to tell Barca to forget about (signing) Bernardo. We want him to stay with us, but I don’t want anyone who’s not happy. The first thing would be for the clubs to come to an agreement, but there has been no offer for him in these last two years,” Guardiola told reporters.
“I don’t want him to go, he’s a superlative player and a great person… and there are only seven or eight days left (in the window) and we would have to turn to the transfer market. I want him to stay. That said, it is true Bernardo likes Barcelona a lot.”
Man City CEO Ferran Soriano also recently commented on the speculation, suggesting that it was too late in the window for Bernardo to be allowed to depart.
Speaking to Spanish outlet Que T’hi Jugues, Soriano said: “It’s a little late [in the transfer window] to talk about ins and outs. This story has taken many turns and in the end it has never moved from its starting point.”
Meanwhile, Bernardo said that he was “very focused” at his English club, telling BBC Sport: “I’m happy. I’m doing my best to help the club. I’m very focused here.”
Paris Saint-Germain have also been credited with an interest in the Portuguese, who has scored once and registered one assist in three Premier League appearances this season.
“I miss Portugal a lot. If I could go back in a year or two, I would. Not only because I would like to play for Benfica again, but because I miss my family and living in Portugal very much,” he told Channel 11 earlier this year.
Guardiola said last summer that Bernardo wanted to leave for personal reasons, but he stayed at Etihad Stadium and was again a key player in 2021-22, scoring 13 goals and registering seven assists in 50 appearances.
Bernardo has won four Premier League titles, one FA Cup and four League Cup crowns since arriving in Manchester from Monaco in July 2017.
Despite their financial issues, Barcelona have managed to bring in Andreas Christensen, Franck Kessie, Raphinha, Robert Lewandowski and Jules Kounde this summer.
However, the Catalan outfit have still not managed to register Kounde, with the club allegedly needing to raise £17m in order to solve the issue, with Memphis Depay and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang potentially departing before the deadline.
Barcelona boss Xavi also said on Wednesday evening that any move for Bernardo in the latter stages of the market would “depend on Man City”.