By Alex Taylor
Manchester City have been dealt their first transfer blow of the summer after key midfield target Sergio Busquets has signed a new contract at Barcelona.
The Spanish giants announced on their website that the 27-year-old has penned a deal that runs until 2021 with an increased release clause that now stands at £152m. The deal also includes an option for a two year extension, dependent on appearances.
The news will frustrate Manchester City fans who see the Spanish international as a ready-made replacement for the departing Yaya Toure.
City fans will have hoped that Busquests would link up again with former manager Pep Guardiola in Manchester and become the first major acquisition in a summer of big spending for the club.
Any move for the World Cup and European Championship winner would now have to break the current world record transfer fee by over £65million.
The holding midfielder has scored just 12 goals in 384 matches since his debut under Guardiola in the 2008/09 season. Despite his lack of goals Busquets has been widely praised for his range of passing and clever reading of the game throughout his time in Spain.
The news will bring more questions than answers as a summer clear out could leave City in need of up to three new central midfield players as well as more defensive and attacking options.
In other Manchester City news, Guardiola sanctions sensational bid for 39-goal striker.