Man City transfer news: Micah Richards urges Guardiola to sign Diego Costa

Manchester City Diego Costa

Manchester City have emerged as favourites for the Premier League title following an imperious run of form in recent weeks. 

Pep Guardiola's side have banished their early season blip and soared to the summit of English football with a run of seven straight league wins. 

That run has coincided with the birth of a colossal centre-back partnership between Ruben Dias and John Stones, while the four-time Premier League winners have also scored eighteen goals on their winning streak. 

That City have put such an outstanding string of results together in the absence of their all-time record goalscorer Sergio Aguero makes it all the more impressive.

Gabriel Jesus is available to Pep Guardiola but the Catalonian, ever the tactical maverick, has favoured a fluid false-nine system that allows the likes of Kevin De Bruyne, Riyad Mahrez, Raheem Sterling and Phil Foden to interchange and share the deep-lying forward responsibilities. 

Despite the club's success with their approach of late, the former City academy graduate and pundit Micah Richards has urged the club to sign a new forward to cement their title credentials.  

The name he's recommended is one that City fans will be familiar with. 

Indeed, Richards has suggested that his former club would win the league if they signed Diego Costa, who was released by Atletico Madrid at the start of January, on a free transfer, per BBC Sport.

"Manchester City are already on a ridiculously good run of form but if they signed Diego Costa now, he would win them the Premier League," was Richards' opening gambit.

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He went on to add: "Why not get him in until the end of the season? He would do more than just ruffle a few feathers and be a pain in the backside for opposition defences - he is a proven finisher who would offer Pep Guardiola's side a proper plan B.

"Yes, you would have to cover Costa's wages, but the massive difference he could make to City's season would make that worthwhile."

It has to be said that Jesus hasn't kicked on in the manner many expected him to.

The Brazilian burst onto the scene with a refreshingly exuberant approach to leading the line, and his form even led to speculation regarding Aguero's future. 

Now, though, Jesus has a tendency to drop deep and pull out wide in search of the ball, leaving the club without a recognised focal point. It's a telling sign of a striker lacking in confidence.

Costa, though proved during his time in English football that he is willing to run in behind, to go head to head in an engaging physical battle with the opponent's centre-back and give them a torrid time with his combative, feisty approach to forward play. 

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And it's the 32-year-old's willingness to play on the last line of defence that appeals to Richards.

"If they had someone who constantly wanted to run in behind defences then, with their creative players looking for them, I honestly think they would be frightening. They would clean up, no matter how teams tried to stop them.

"Costa could be that striker and not only would he finish the chances that City are making, his presence would increase the opportunities for his team-mates too."

It's an intriguing shout from Richards and it'd be fascinating to see Costa up to his old tricks in English football once more.

But despite the obvious logic behind the transfer recommendation, Guardiola is unlikely to want to add such a divisive character to what appears to be a settled squad. 

Nothing appears to be broken at the Etihad Stadium, so why fix it? 

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