Kevin De Bruyne's 'astonishing' £55m deal to join Manchester City
Wolfsburg have claimed that Kevin De Bruyne has received an "astonishing, astonishing" offer to join Manchester City.
The fee for the midfielder is expected to rise to between £55m and £57m - close to a British record - with add-ons.
The financial details of the transfer are understood to have now been agreed with De Bruyne, who is expected to fly to England as early as today for a medical.
Klaus Allofs, the Wolfsburg general manager, revealed that the transfer was close to being concluded after a breakthrough in negotiations yesterday.
"During the day, we have gone on with negotiations and we've got closer," he said. "But the deal is not done. Hopefully, we will find an end tonight or tomorrow."
Allofs added that De Bruyne would be a big loss, even though the club would be making a huge profit on the 24-year-old, who cost around £18m in January 2014 after he left Chelsea.
"Have a look at the statistics," Allofs said. "It is a big blow if he is leaving but, you know, it's a difficult situation. He's had an astonishing, astonishing offer from City and we can't compete with that. We had to take it seriously and that is the way we react with our players and finally we decided to start negotiations with City. It's a situation that nobody was thinking about when he started with us."
De Bruyne is expected to earn around £200,000 a week at City. Allofs admitted the financial power of the Premier League was causing a problem for even the strongest Continental clubs.
"I would prefer to keep him, not to get the money," Allofs said. "But the money now is really the issue because Kevin was qualified with Wolfsburg for the Champions League and he was a key player and took the next step."
Elsewhere, Manchester United have still had no contact from Real Madrid since rejecting an offer for David de Gea earlier in the summer and do not anticipate a new bid will be submitted before the transfer window closes on Tuesday.
According to reports in Spain, however, that belief could well be tested with suggestions that a final take-it-or-leave it offer will be made in the coming days. United are sceptical that Real will get back in contact at this stage, though.
At the same time, United manager Louis van Gaal is understood to have told the club that he is happy with his squad and does not believe they must buy.