Man City will ramp up their pursuit of an impressive Premier League performer with their impending Raheem Sterling sale the catalyst that’ll spark their progress, per a source.
Sterling, 27, is on course to join Chelsea in the coming days. The Blues have reached a deal with Man City worth an initial £45m. The final cost of the move could reach £50m pending add-ons.
The England winger will reportedly net a pay rise from the move too. He is set to become Chelsea’s highest paid player, surpassing N’Golo Kante’s reported £290,000-a-week salary.
City have already forked out well over £100m on Erling Haaland, Kalvin Phillips and Julian Alvarez this summer. Goalkeeper Stefan Ortega arrived from Arminia Bielefeld as a free agent.
However, the Cityzens have already recouped £45m from the sale of Gabriel Jesus to Arsenal.
Combined with the incoming Sterling cash and the exits of Gavin Bazunu (£12m), Romeo Lavia (£10.5m), Pedro Porro (£7.2m) Darko Gyabi (£5m) and Ko Itakura (£4.3m), City will have actually made a net profit from sales.
That will give them license to make another splash. According to Italian journalist Rudy Galetti, that’s exactly what’s coming.
He tweeted once Sterling completes his move to Chelsea, City will focus on finalising a deal to sign Brighton’s Marc Cucurella.
Transfer talks ‘progressing well’
The Spanish left-back, 23, enjoyed a fantastic debut campaign in England last term. His faultless efforts saw him scoop the Brighton Player of the Season and Players’ Player of the Season awards.
They also saw him attract the attention of Man City who only have three recognised full-backs in their ranks (Kyle Walker, Joao Cancelo and Oleksandr Zinchenko).
Fabrizio Romano previously confirmed Cucurella was in Man City’s sights. Galetti now states talks over a switch to the Etihad are ‘progressing well’.
In fact, City reportedly wish to accelerate negotiations once Sterling goes and wrap up a deal with all haste.
While the journalist did not cite a transfer fee, Romano previously claimed Brighton could command as much as £50m.
Cucurella would complete Man City squad
Very few areas of Guardiola’s squad can be termed under-strength. However, it cannot be argued City are short on depth at full-back.
Kyle Walker remains an elite performer, though at 32, will begin to struggle to feature two to three times a week as City’s schedule often demands.
Cancelo is the primary left-back despite being right-footed. However, he also doubles up as the chief back-up to Walker on the right.
Nathan Ake can cover at left-back when required, though the Dutchman has been linked with Chelsea.
As such, adding Cucurella to the mix would give Guardiola breathing room at full-back. And if his first season at the AMEX was anything to go by, he’ll have no trouble making the step up in class at City.
The only other positions under scrutiny at City had been centre-forward and holding midfield when it became apparent Fernandinho would leave.
However, the arrivals of Haaland and Phillips have emphatically put those subjects to bed.