Man City close in on $75m Sane deal

German wants to play in the EPL after Schalke consent to his transfer request

LONDON • Schalke's sporting director has confirmed that Leroy Sane will be leaving the German Bundesliga football club this summer, with Manchester City confident of completing a £42 million (S$75.1 million) deal for the Germany international.

The 20-year-old, who has been on City's radar since 2013, is understood to be keen to move to the English Premier League despite his father stating on Monday that the forward could still move to Bayern Munich or Real Madrid.

However, after Carlo Ancelotti admitted on Tuesday that Bayern are no longer interested in signing him, City manager Pep Guardiola will be encouraged to hear Christian Heidel's admission that Sane is set to leave the Bundesliga side.

"Leroy has made it clear he would like to leave this summer," Heidel told Sky Sports. "We will consent to a transfer if Schalke's conditions are met."

Initially, City were willing to offer only around £35 million for the player who made his debut for Schalke in April 2014 and has 11 goals and seven assists in 47 Bundesliga games for the club.

But with Schalke holding out for their asking price of €50 million (S$74.8 million), it is believed City will submit an improved offer.

Leroy Sane in action for Germany during a pre-Euro 2016 friendly against Hungary. He has recorded 11 goals and seven assists in 47 Bundesliga games for Schalke.
Leroy Sane in action for Germany during a pre-Euro 2016 friendly against Hungary. He has recorded 11 goals and seven assists in 47 Bundesliga games for Schalke. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

The son of the former Senegal striker Souleyman and former German rhythmic gymnast champion Regina Weber, Sane was included in Germany's Euro 2016 squad but played only 11 minutes, against France in the semi-final, which Germany lost 0-2.

Earlier on Tuesday, Ancelotti denied reports that Bayern were looking to sign him.

"The team are very good. All positions are well staffed and we do not need new players for this season," the Bayern manager said.

"We have very good young players here. You have to give them the opportunity to gain experience."

City have already agreed a £4 million fee to sign the Argentinian goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli, with the 24-year-old set to join Real Sociedad on a season-long loan.

Rulli, who is a product of the Estudiantes youth system in his homeland, has spent the last two seasons on loan at Sociedad from Uruguayan side Deportivo Maldonado and impressed City manager Pep Guardiola with his performances in the Spanish Primera Liga.

However, despite reports that City could look to replace Joe Hart this summer, it is understood that Guardiola still considers the England goalkeeper as his first choice and is happy for Rulli to continue his development on loan.

Having first broken into the Estudiantes team in 2013, he became a regular the following season before his economic rights were purchased by Maldonado in 2014.

Like Jonathan Calleri, a striker who is set to join West Ham on loan from Maldonado in the coming days, Rulli is currently preparing to represent Argentina at the Olympics in Rio.

THE GUARDIAN

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 21, 2016, with the headline 'Man City close in on $75m Sane deal'. Print Edition | Subscribe