£41m fee for Ake would be a club-record sale for Bournemouth
Last Updated: 30/07/20 12:37pm
Manchester City have had a £41m offer for defender Nathan Ake accepted by Bournemouth.
Talks between the clubs over the Netherlands centre-back had begun before the end of the Premier League season, but confirmation of Bournemouth’s relegation to the Championship on Sunday all but confirmed that the 25-year-old would depart this summer.
Ake joined Bournemouth from Chelsea for a club-record fee of £20m in 2017 and had been linked with a return to Stamford Bridge, but City appear to be in pole position to sign the defender.
City have been linked with several centre-backs since the departure of Vincent Kompany at the end of the 2018-19 season. They missed out to rivals United on Harry Maguire last summer and have consistently been linked with Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly.
Ake played 29 times in the Premier League this season for Bournemouth as Eddie Howe’s side were relegated, finishing a point from safety in 18th place.
The fee, which would be a club-record sale for Bournemouth, would see them receive £40m up front, with a further £1m to come in add-ons.
Guardiola was asked about the potential signing of Ake in the January transfer window, at which point he ruled out a move but hinted that he would revisit the situation this summer.
“We don’t speak about that,” he said in answer to a question on the Dutchman. “We’re going to finish this season with the players that we started with. If something’s going to happen, it will be in the summer time.”
Sky Sports’ Jamie Carragher has questioned the logic behind City targeting another left-sided centre-back with Aymeric Laporte already at the club. He tweeted:
I like Nathan Ake & I think he will suit Man City, but with Laporte a guaranteed starter I’m not convinced two left footed centre backs works? I know right footed players play together but it never feels right the other way round to me! Left back or a Back 3 🤷♂️ https://t.co/SgqVS8zO09
— Jamie Carragher (@Carra23) July 30, 2020
Bournemouth could lose several key players following their relegation, with Callum Wilson and David Brooks also attracting attention from Premier League sides.
City appear to be attempting to get their business done early in a transfer window that was delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic, with the club close to agreeing a deal for Valencia winger Ferran Torres.
Analysis: Centre-back won’t solve all City’s issues
Former Man City defender Micah Richards insisted earlier this month Guardiola’s side need a leader in defence to close the gap on Liverpool next season.
However, he also told Sky Sports one centre-back alone won’t transform them back into champions.
“It’s not as simple as getting a centre-back in,” he told Sky Sports. “Fernandinho will be a year older and his legs won’t be the same as this season or past seasons.
“Just buying a centre-back is not going to solve all the issues. People say Van Dijk solved Liverpool’s problems, and he did to an extent, but his arrival coincided with the improvement in Trent and Robertson, and also Alisson arrived.
“But getting a centre-half would help so much in terms of consistency, and to have somebody who understands that position more to drive the team forward.”
Summer transfer window – key dates and times
The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.
A domestic-only window for trades between the Premier League and EFL then runs from October 5 and closes on Friday October 16 at 5pm. Follow all the news and analysis on Sky Sports News and across Sky Sports‘ digital platforms, including with our dedicated Transfer Centre blog.
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Source : Sky Sports