Atletico Madrid announce that star midfielder is joining Man City

Nestor Watach

Manchester City look to have finally secured a long-term Fernandinho successor as the move for Rodri has officially been confirmed. 

City have activated the release clause in the Atletico Madrid midfielder’s contract, the LaLiga club have announced.

The 23-year-old was tied to Atletico until 2023, but City have met the reported £62.6million asking price to pave the way for his departure.

A statement on the Spanish club’s website said: “LaLiga has informed Atletico de Madrid that Rodrigo Hernandez, through his lawyer, and representatives from Manchester City, paid the player’s release clause at the sports association’s headquarters on Wednesday, July 3.

“Manchester City has paid the buyout clause on behalf of the player.

“The player has therefore unilaterally terminated his contract with our club, which ran until June 30, 2023.”

The Spain international began his career in Atletico’s youth ranks before moving to Villarreal in December 2015.

He made 47 appearances for the club last season as they finished runners-up to champions Barcelona and eight points clear of derby rivals Real Madrid, and eight more for his country.

Rodri would become City’s record signing with his fee eclipsing the £60million City paid Leicester for Algeria international Riyad Mahrez last summer.

Guardiola has reportedly long been an admirer of the Spaniard, who he views as a similar sort of player to Sergio Busquets, who he developed and won several major honours with at Barcelona.

Man City have yet to officially announce the transfer themselves.