City agree £21m fee for Tor­res as Guardi­ola be­gins re­vamp

Highly-rated Va­len­cia winger to bol­ster at­tack af­ter Sane exit Club in talks to sign de­fender Ake and are tar­get­ing a left-back

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Sport - By James Ducker

Pep Guardi­ola is close to mak­ing his first sign­ing of the sum­mer af­ter Manch­ester City agreed an ini­tial £20.9mil­lion fee with Va­len­cia for the highly-rated Spain Un­der-21 winger Fer­ran Tor­res.

City had lined up Tor­res as their first-choice re­place­ment for Leroy Sane, who left for Bay­ern Mu­nich this month, and moved quickly to se­cure a deal amid wide­spread in­ter­est from across Europe in the 20-year-old.

Although Tor­res has en­tered the fi­nal 12 months of his con­tract at Va­len­cia and wants to leave, it still rep­re­sents an im­pres­sive piece of busi­ness from City, who could now step up in­ter­est in Nathan Ake, the Bournemout­h de­fender.

Va­len­cia are in line to re­ceive a num­ber of add-ons worth as much as €12mil­lion (£10.9mil­lion), which could value the to­tal deal at around £31.8mil­lion – still a rel­a­tively small fee for one of the con­ti­nent’s most promis­ing young wide play­ers.

City are in the process of iron­ing out the fi­nal de­tails of the trans­fer, although these are ex­pected to be a for­mal­ity. Tor­res, who had made clear his de­sire to play un­der Guardi­ola, is ex­pected to sign a five-year con­tract with the club.

Peter Lim, the Va­len­cia owner, has needed to sell play­ers to raise funds due to the Covid-19 cri­sis and the club’s fail­ure to qual­ify for the Cham­pi­ons League.

City have been locked in talks over a fee for Tor­res and an agree­ment in prin­ci­ple is un­der­stood fi­nally to have been struck yes­ter­day. There have also been dis­cus­sions over Yan­gel Her­rera, the Venezuela mid­fielder whom Va­len­cia are keen to sign from City. Her­rera has im­pressed on loan at Granada this sea­son.

The prospec­tive deal for Tor­res is an early vic­tory for City in what is ex­pected to be a busy sum­mer for the club. Txiki Be­giris­tain, the City di­rec­tor of foot­ball, had pledged to move quickly in the mar­ket af­ter the trans­fer win­dow opened on Mon­day and has stayed true to his word,

with the club wast­ing lit­tle time in re­plac­ing Sane, who they sold to Bay­ern for a pro­jected £54.8 mil­lion on July 3.

Guardi­ola wants at least three sign­ings this sum­mer af­ter sur­ren­der­ing the Premier League ti­tle to Liver­pool and was keen to bol­ster his at­tack fol­low­ing Sane’s exit.

Tor­res had been linked with a host of top clubs, in­clud­ing Real Madrid, Barcelona and Liver­pool. Those who have worked with Tor­res have likened his tech­ni­cal abil­ity and in­tel­li­gence to the former Arse­nal winger Robert Pires, al­beit with more pace. He tends to play on the right, but can op­er­ate on both flanks. He man­aged six goals and eight as­sists for Va­len­cia this sea­son.

City have had talks with Bournemout­h about Ake, who could be avail­able for a cut-price fee af­ter it emerged the cen­tre-half does not have a rel­e­ga­tion clause in his con­tract. Guardi­ola could sign two cen­tral de­fend­ers and also wants a left-back.

Huge po­ten­tial: Fer­ran Tor­res is a Spain Un­der-21 winger who has been likened to Robert Pires, al­beit with more pace

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