Barca beats Man City and rivals United to £32m Alexis Sanchez
Barcelona appear to have won the race with Manchester City and Manchester United to sign Alexis Sanchez. The Chile winger is expected to complete a £32m move to the European champions from Udinese this week.
Delegations from both Manchester clubs — led by City chief executive Garry Cook and his United counterpart, David Gill – met Gino Pozzo, the transfer supremo at Udinese, last week to begin discussions over the 22 year-old as the Italian side looked to establish which suitors were prepared to meet their asking price.
Pozzo also held talks with two Italian sides — believed to be Juventus and Inter Milan — as well as meeting Barcelona’s sporting director, Andoni Zubizarreta, and vice-president, Josep Maria Bartomeu.
Sources in Chile and Spain have suggested it is the Catalan side who were first to offer Udinese an acceptable proposal, agreeing to pay around £25 million up front and a further £7 million in performance-related clauses.
Sanchez has spent the past few days in Santiago training with his national side in preparation for next month’s Copa America, but is reported to have been granted permission by Chile manager Claudio Borghi to travel to Barcelona to complete his move if necessary.
Borghi, whose side faced Estonia in their final warm-up game on Sunday night, has made clear his preference for the player to move to the Spanish champions, while Sanchez is believed to have already been congratulated on joining Pep Guardiola’s side by his Chilean team-mates.