Chelsea and Manchester City are in advanced talks over a deal for Raheem Sterling, with Thomas Tuchel determined to add the England winger to their attacking options.
A source said Sky Sports News an agreement between the two clubs on a fee is “close”, although another official has suggested this is an overly optimistic view of ongoing negotiations.
Any deal between Chelsea and City would be contingent on Sterling’s personal deal, and it is believed he would be expected to top the salary he is currently receiving at City, in line with his status as one of the biggest attacking talents in the game. the Premier League at the height of his career.
As previously reported, Sterling’s relationship with Pep Guardiola and City remains very positive, with the Premier League champions content to let the 27-year-old go, even to a rival, as long as there is an acceptable offer in the area. of £50 million.
Sterling currently has just one year left on his existing contract at the Etihad, with no plans to extend it.
He is keen to discuss a possible return to London, where much of his family is still based – he grew up in Neasden, a few miles from Wembley.
Sterling would offer Tuchel a guaranteed threat – he’s directly contributed to 165 combined divisional goals in 320 appearances for Liverpool and City – as well as tactical flexibility and experience.
The 27-year-old believes he is in the decisive phase of his career and wants to make a significant contribution on and off the pitch.
That City can afford to lose two strikers to members of the ‘Big Six’ – Gabriel Jesus to Arsenal for £45million and Sterling to Stamford Bridge – without worry is a sign of their strong recruitment and gap between clubs.
Transfers between clubs at the top of the table are set to become more common as European sides struggle to compete financially with their English counterparts.
‘Sterling is a polarizing target for Chelsea fans but would help freshen up the attack’
Athletic’s Liam Twomey on Sky Sports News:
“I think it’s a transfer that potentially works out well for all parties. Sterling needs a change of scenery; he’s fallen out of favor at Manchester City, he has a year left on his contract and he won’t doesn’t seem to be much of a market for him outside of Chelsea.
“I think a lot of big Premier League clubs are going through that right now where it’s easier for them to sell themselves, potentially, than anyone else, given the finances at stake. And Chelsea need of a way to refresh his attacking options, especially after letting Romelu Lukaku return to Inter on loan.
“I think the new owners also want to make a statement and while Raheem Sterling may not be the most exotic or exciting name for some Chelsea fans, he has proven himself in the Premier League, 27 , a key England international, would clearly be a quality addition.
“I think Sterling is a bit of a polarizing target among Chelsea fans and I think that’s partly because he’s so familiar. We know his flaws as a player so well, as well as his strengths, because we’ve been watching him forever in the Premier League and I think that feeds into the way a lot of Chelsea fans view him, but there’s no denying that he’s been a very effective player in the top teams in this league for very, very long, so I think he would be a very reliable performer.
“We are also seeing an increased willingness from Chelsea to look at proven Premier League targets. fit or in some cases not really fit at all and was not maximized in the team.
“Someone like Sterling who has already produced at a high level in the Premier League for many years, you can see why that would be attractive to Chelsea and, to Boehly, he’s a big name. is someone you can always expect to be productive for many more years.”
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