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 £55 million and £57 million – 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 Friday for a medical.
Klaus Allofs, the Wolfsburg general manager, revealed that the transfer was close to being concluded after a breakthrough in negotiations on Thursday afternoon.
“During the day, we have gone on with negotiations and we’ve got closer to each other. But the deal is not done. So, hopefully, we will find an end tonight or tomorrow morning,” Allofs said after the Champions League draw in Monaco where his club was drawn in the same group as Manchester United.
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 £18 million in January 2014 after he left Chelsea.
“Have a look at the statistics,” Allofs said. “Kevin did I don’t know how many assists and he scored 10 goals, so he was, he still is, a key player for Wolfsburg. 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 really 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.