London, July 25: Manchester City attacker Leroy Sane has claimed that the Citizens' biggest rival for the coming Premier League season will be Maurizio Sarri's Chelsea.
Chelsea finished 30 points behind City last season as the Stamford Bridge side ended the campaign with an FA Cup trophy but outside top four.
Since then, the Blues have made a managerial change and brought on board former Napoli boss Sarri and midfielder Jorginho. The Italian duo was seen showing immediate impact in Chelsea's first pre-season game against Australian side Perth Glory, where they won 1-0.
The 2016-17 Premier League winning team looks more eager to attack and pressing which was missing in the last season under Antonio Conte.
And Sane, who confronted Napoli last season in Champions League under Sarri, has now suggested that he had been impressed by Sarri's method and believes the Italian will shape up the London side in such an attacking way that can lead to a title threat.
Leroy Sane: "Chelsea have brought in a really good coach. Sarri's Napoli played brilliant football and we suffered against them. Chelsea could be a really tough team this season and I think the biggest threat to Man City this season will be Chelsea"— Nouman (@nomifooty) July 23, 2018
.#leroysane #chelsea #mancity pic.twitter.com/f4g3Inf14E
When asked which side poses the biggest threat to City retaining their crown, the Germany international added, “I think Chelsea.”
“Chelsea have brought in a really good coach,” Sane added.
“The way Napoli played last season was really attractive. We really suffered against them.
“They might need some time to get used to his tactics but they could be a really tough team.”
Sane's Manchester City will face Chelsea in the curtain raiser of the season on August 5th, where they will fight for the Community Shield final at Wembley.
Meanwhile, Chelsea midfielder Barkley has suggested that he is looking for a great season under new manager Sarri.
Barkley who joined Chelsea last winter under Conte struggled for game time and fitness since his £15m move as he managed only four appearances last term.
However, the former Everton midfielder now has suggested that he is relishing working under Sarri and want to kick-start his Chelsea career on a high this coming season.
"I can see from the training sessions that this season is going to be very exciting," Barkley told Chelsea's website.
"It has been very interesting - the style that he wants us to play, it is very attacking, as well as being very organised.
"Game by game I will feel much better and ready for the season."
Really impressed by Barkley also today, seems sharp, fit and ready to go again. Needs to stay this fit and hopefully Sarri can bring the best out of him. pic.twitter.com/2pT5PTipWy— Uber Chelsea FC 🏆 (@UberCheIseaFC) July 23, 2018
Barkley started in Sarri's first game in charge on Monday in pre-season friendly against Perth Glory, where he looked impressive, hitting the post once and creating a number of chances.