Monday 19 March 2018

Jesus set for new deal as City tie down key men

Gabriel Jesus of Manchester City. Photo: Getty Images
Gabriel Jesus of Manchester City. Photo: Getty Images

James Ducker

Gabriel Jesus is in line for a significant pay hike at Manchester City once the club have wrapped up new deals for David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne.

Silva is in talks to extend his contract at City by a further 12 months to June 2020, while De Bruyne is expected to almost double his existing £6m-a-year salary in the coming weeks.

City will then turn their attentions to getting Jesus to agree a new deal that will dramatically boost the Brazil striker's current wages - thought to be around £70,000 a week.

Jesus, 20, agreed to join City from Palmeiras last summer but he did not arrive until January, since when a record of 12 goals in 15 starts and the extraordinary subsequent inflation in the transfer market has made his £27m fee look like a bargain.

City recognise that Jesus's standing has increased markedly in little time and that his existing deal, which runs until June 2021, is no longer reflective of his position as one of the key players in Guardiola's side and one of the most highly regarded young talents in world football.

City's pay structure is heavily incentivised, with players often accepting lower basics in return for very generous bonuses if performance targets are met, but a new deal will still see Jesus at least double his basic salary.

Jesus's arrival has served to raise Sergio Aguero's game and the pair have formed a formidable strike force so far this season en route to helping City reach the top of the Premier League, with 11 goals in six games between them in all competitions.

Aguero scored a hat-trick in the 6-0 thrashing of Watford last Saturday, when Jesus scored once, and City have now plundered 15 goals in their past three matches without conceding.

The signing Jesus is reflective of Pep Guardiola's determination to drive down the age profile of the squad and assemble a group of players who could be successful for years to come.

David Silva, 31, is one of only five players out of Guardiola's 23-man senior squad over the age of 30.

The average age of the squad is now just 25, with 10 players under that age and eight in the 26 to 29 bracket, including De Bruyne.

City have also sought to secure their best players on long-term contracts, with six of the squad tied to the club until June 2022, four until June 2021 and seven until June 2020. That will become eight once Silva signs his new deal.

Veteran midfielders Fernandinho and Yaya Toure are the only senior players out of contract next summer. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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