Manchester City will pay a world record fee for a goalkeeper if the signing of Benficas 23-year-old Brazilian Ederson goes ahead
Manchester City look set to sign the Benfica goalkeeper Ederson for a reported fee of 34.9m.
The 23-year-old, who has been followed by some of Europes biggest clubs this season, admitted on Sunday night that Benficas cup final victory over Vitoria was probably my last game for the club.
The Brazilian, who is renowned for his footballing skills, possesses one of the longest kicks in the game he once scored from his own box in his youth career fits Pep Guardiolas mould for a keeper and is expected in Manchester for a medical this week. I still dont know but this was probably my last game for Benfica, he said, after the 2-1 defeat of Vitoria.
Edersons fee would represent a world record for a goalkeeper, eclipsing the 32.6m paid by Juventus to Parma for Gianluigi Buffon in 2001.
City may have to overcome some complications with third-party ownership as his former club Rio Ave still own 50 per cent of the goalkeepers economic rights. Benfica possess the other half. It also means Benfica are holding out for a large transfer fee.
Several outstanding displays in the Champions League this season have bolstered Edersons reputation. He has been called up to the Brazil squad but has not yet made his international debut. He won a Portuguese league and cup double this season and the club are expecting his departure, with the coach Rui Vitria saying: If Ederson leaves, he leaves with the gratitude of Benfica.
City have struggled for consistency between the posts with Claudio Bravo, signed from Barcelona last summer, enduring a difficult season while Willy Caballero has left after his contract came to an end. Edersons arrival would cast further doubt on the prospects of Englands No1 Joe Hart, who has spent the season on loan at Torino and is expected to be sold in the summer.
The signing would also represent a blow for Citys Manchester rivals United, should David de Gea make his move to Real Madrid, with Jos Mourinho an admirer of the goalkeeper. Mourinho has been linked with Ederson and if, as expected, De Gea departs for Spain in the coming months, he will need a new No1 at Old Trafford, although he may decide he can begin the campaign with Sergio Romero. United have also been linked with the Atltico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak, should De Gea make his move to the Spanish capital.
City have begun the post-season period ambitiously and last week completed the 43m signing of Monacos Bernardo Silva.
Jess Navas, Gal Clichy and Bacary Sagna departed last week in addition to Caballero and Pablo Zabaleta, while Newcastle United have been linked with their out-of-favour centre-half Eliaquim Mangala. Rafael Bentez is reportedly keen on the defender but he will have to battle with his former club Valencia for his services. The newly promoted club are ready to pay a 15m asking price for the 26-year-old who cost the club 32m when he moved from Porto in 2014.