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'He will have to return' - Pep Guardiola hints at sensational Man City U-turn on forgotten man

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Pep Guardiola has opened the door for outcast defender Joao Cancelo to return to Manchester City this summer. Cancelo has spent the last 18 months out on loan after falling out with Guardiola in January 2023, joining Bayern Munich on loan for the second half of last season.

Bayern opted against making his move permanent despite having that option, so Cancelo joined Barcelona on loan for the 2023/24 campaign, without any pre-agreed deal to purchase him.

The Portuguese had taken part in City's pre-season tour to Japan and South Korea last summer before moving to Barcelona, and Guardiola admits that could happen again this summer - and there could even be a scenario where Cancelo stays at City and reintegrates into the first team squad. ALSO READ: Pep Guardiola sends simple message to Barcelona over Bernardo Silva transfer interest ami £50m release clause ALSO READ: "It gives us more hunger, more tenacity" - Inside Man City's year as Champions League winners With Barcelona keen to re-sign Cancelo in some capacity - but unlikely able to afford him permanently given he still has three years on his City contract - Guardiola was asked about the full-back's situation while taking part in the Legends Trophy golf tournament this week. “It has to be the best for everyone," he said. “The two clubs will sit down.

He is our player and, if an agreement is not reached, he will have to return in the pre-season. If he wants to stay here [at Barcelona], and the clubs agree, it will be done again." Both Guardiola and Cancelo dismissed reports of a falling-out in January 2023, but Cancelo had become irritated that Rico Lewis was starting ahead of him after the 2022 World Cup, so a loan exit was sanctioned.

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