The biggest transfer saga of the transfer season came to an end after Lionel Messi confirmed that he is staying at Barcelona till the expiration of his current contract with the club. Manchester City will quickly need to pivot in the window to identify alternatives who will allow them to close the gap on Liverpool in the Premier League.
Here is the latest regarding the ins and outs at the Etihad on 4th September.
Manchester City set to make new Kalidou Koulibaly bid
Manchester City are set to make a new £67m bid for Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly after their previous bid was rejected by the Italian side (as reported by the BBC). The Premier League giants have elected against negotiating directly with the Serie A giants, deciding to use Koulibaly's agent to complete the deal.
The centre-back position remains a priority for Pep Guardiola despite the signing of Nathan Ake. Koulibaly has attracted interest from a number of suitors all around Europe but the financial implications of the COVID-19 pandemic have meant that only Manchester City are in a position to sign the defender.
Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis admitted that he decided against selling the defender last season despite a €110 million bid by an unnamed club.
"By now I have decided one thing: from now on when there are important offers, we will give up, even if they have been here for a year. When I was offered 110 million euros, I was wrong not to sell Koulibaly."
Manchester City receive a boost as they expect to sign Lionel Messi for free next summer
Manchester City expect to sign Lionel Messi for free next summer, according to a report in Caught Offside. The Barcelona captain has decided to stay at Camp Nou for another season to avoid legal battles against his boyhood club, confirming to Goal that he did intend to leave the club during the current transfer window.
"Now I am going to continue in the club because the president told me that the only way to leave was to pay the €700 million (£624m/$823m) clause, and that this is impossible."
"There was another way and it was to go to trial, I would never go to court against Barca because it is the club that I love, which gave me everything since I arrived."
Ronald Koeman and the Barcelona board will do well to convince the Number 10 to finish his career at his boyhood club beyond his contract, which ends at the end of the current season.
Rangers want Manchester City man Patrick Roberts on loan
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard wants to sign former Celtic loanee Patrick Roberts on loan, according to Vital Football. Roberts has failed to live up to the promise he showed on loan in Scotland, recently returning to Manchester City after yet another loan spell at Middlesborough.
The 23-year-old now seems poised to make a controversial switch to Celtic's arch-rivals Rangers. The right-winger, who is contracted with the Cityzens till 2022, will look to rejuvenate his career in the SPL.Published 05 Sep 2020, 09:53 IST