Manchester City are planning to move quickly to bolster their treble-winning team, with a deal to buy Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic apparently ‘on the edge’ of being finalized.
When Pep Guardiola’s team defeated Inter Milan 1-0 in Istanbul last weekend to win the Champions League, they added it to the Premier League and FA Cup victories they had already achieved this season.
Despite their victory, City is not content to sit back and celebrate. According to ESPN, Guardiola’s team is close to signing Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic for £34.2 million, ending his five-year tenure in west London.
Kovacic made 221 appearances for Chelsea while on loan from Real Madrid before switching to a permanent £40 million move a year later. He also won the Champions League and Europa League during his time at the club.
The Croatian international is currently in the Netherlands, where he assisted his side in reaching the Nations League final on Wednesday night. However, he is anticipated to finalize the move following Croatia’s final match against Spain this next weekend.
The transfer will be a part of Guardiola’s summer makeover, with City also rumored to be interested in midfielder Declan Rice of West Ham.
Guardiola declared that his team was starting a new chapter after the Champions League final.
He said to a Spanish news station, “I think the job is done.
“The five Premier League titles we’ve already won have significance because to this Champions League. However, it is also true that we need to return home, unplug somewhat, and knowing all of us, we will all re-plug in when our adrenaline levels rise.
After the treble celebrations, City’s five England players—Jack Grealish, John Stones, Kalvin Phillips, Phil Foden, and Kyle Walker—joined the Three Lions, and England manager Gareth Southgate believes they can now return their attention to the game.
Before Friday’s match against Malta, Southgate remarked, “There is a line but in our heads we weren’t thinking of including the City players for this game.”
“I have had conversations with the guys. We have discussed where the focus should be, where we need them to be, and we have acknowledged what they have gone through. I am now in charge of managing it.
But, first and foremost, they all wanted to come in to be with the group, which is terrific. It’s a big occasion and we needed to give those men the opportunity to soak it all in.
They wouldn’t have perceived anything strange in the way we handled the situation or welcomed the guys back into the group, I believe.