Manchester City are optimistic Riyad Mahrez will be unveiled as their £60m record signing by Friday, after they made a breakthrough with Leicester City.
The proposed transfer had stalled because Leicester wanted the City winger Patrick Roberts as part of the deal but it is thought that demand has been dropped. Mahrez had been holding out for a sizeable sum he believed Leicester owed him, and this may now have been resolved.
Pep Guardiola turned to the Algerian in the January transfer window when his first choice, Alexis Sánchez, opted to sign for Manchester United. A move failed to materialise after Leicester demanded around £95m. No formal offer was made then.
The total value of the current deal is expected to rise to around £75m, its basic £60m fee eclipsing City’s record £57.2m paid to Athletic Bilbao for defender Aymeric Laporte in January.
Joe Hart, the former England and City No 1, participated in Monday’s opening day of training with his future in limbo. The 31-year-old will almost certainly depart after being loaned out by Guardiola for the past two seasons.
Angus Gunn, the No 3 goalkeeper, is set to join Southampton.