Premier League champions Manchester City are closing in on signing midfielder Rodri Hernandez from Atletico Madrid, according to reports.
City have been keen on Rodri for some time but have now made their interest formal and are close to signing him, after meeting the €70 million (£61.5 million) release clause in his contract, Spanish newspaper AS has reported.
Rodri, 22, has been one of Atletico’s standout players this season and is rated as one of the best young players in Europe. It is thought that City manager boss Pep Guardiola sees him as a long-term replacement for the ageing Fernandinho in the middle of the park.
The Spanish international is now in the process of agreeing personal terms on a long-term deal that would net him a significant increase in wages.
If the deal completes, it would be a record for City, eclipsing the £60 million they paid Leicester City for Riyad Mahrez last summer.
While Atletico would like him to say, boss Diego Simeone is not thought to view the player’s loss as a major blow, again according to AS. Also, by departing soon he gives Simeone the longest time to find a replacement.