The Spanish international was heavily linked with a move away from the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano after slipping down the starting XI pecking order in Diego Simeone’s plans in 2021.
However, despite some rumoured interest in a permanent exit away from the Spanish capital, Saul opted to join Premier League rivals Chelsea on a season long loan.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) September 2, 2021
According to reports from the Manchester Evening News, Guardiola personally vetoed a possible deal for the 26-year-old, with no interest from the Catalan coach in making a move.
A potential swap deal with Bernardo Silva heading in the opposite direction was also suggested as a possible alternative but City declined to open talks on an exchange.
Guardiola had previously labelled Saul as ‘an exceptional player’ but confirmed his belief the La Roja schemer would remain with Atletico for a ‘long time’.
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