Aymeric Laporte offers Man City exit verdict after Chelsea transfer approach revealed amid Ake, Sterling deals
Aymeric Laporte has insisted that he will not leave Manchester City in a high-profile summer transfer unlike Raheem Sterling and Nathan Ake.
City have made their mark in the current window and have bought effectively. The arrival of Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland is an exciting one, as is that of former Leeds United talisman Kalvin Phillips.
But in the wake of those deals, Pep Guardiola’s side have not held back in sanctioning high-profile exits.
And Chelsea are looking like they will become the main benefactors.
They are closing in on a deal for City and England star Raheem Sterling to add to their attack following Romelu Lukaku’s exit. Meanwhile, former Chelsea defender Nathan Ake is eyeing a return to Stamford Bridge to partially fill a hole in Thomas Tuchel’s defence.
According to the Evening Standard, Chelsea also enquired about a move for Spain international centre-back Laporte.
However, City rejected the proposition ‘out of hand’, with Laporte more indispensable than Ake.
And speaking to RMC Sport, Laporte insisted that he does not want to leave the Etihad Stadium this summer anyway.
“Four league trophies, yes, but that’s 11 in all,” the 28-year-old said. “It’s not just the Premier League. It’s very good for the club and for me. I’m happy to benefit people here too by bringing the Premier League trophy. It had never happened.
“So I’m super happy with this season that I’ve had, despite an injury at the end of the season. I was able to hold on until the end.”
Laporte staying after Chelsea transfer interest
“Yes [I am staying this season], I’m super happy and fit, the team too,” he added.
“There remains only the common objective, the Champions League, but we will do everything to get it this year.”
Laporte, who was born in France, added that it is “not the goal” to play football in his home country again just yet.
Indeed, he “played a lot of minutes” last season – and was in fact “the central defender who had the most”.
He is therefore backing himself to “go on for a long time”, with three years left on his current contract.
City making Premier League more exciting
In recent years, City have dominated the headlines for their eye-catching and successful style of play under Guardiola – not to mention the oft-cited transfer fees.
This summer, though, they are playing a role reversal game, with some of their high-profile acquisitions making the Premier League more exciting.
In particular, Sterling will have eyes on him at Chelsea as the senior England international seeks a new adventure trying to close the gap to his former club at the top-flight’s summit ahead of the World Cup.
Gabriel Jesus also finds himself in a similar position. The Brazil international has become Arsenal’s new marquee striker looking to fire them back into the Champions League and beyond.
For all the talk of City’s expensive acquisitions, it is their departures this summer which are making a lot of the headlines.
But City, with Laporte now an even more senior centre-back option amid Ake’s exit – and Haaland in the ranks – still hope they can keep hold of top spot next season.