Sources: Barcelona open preliminary Ilkay Gundogan talks - Man City stance revealed
Barcelona are optimistic about completing a deal for Man City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan this summer, sources have told Football Insider.
The 32-year-old is set to walk away from the Etihad Stadium for free this summer and the Catalan giants have already held talks with his representatives.
La Liga leaders Barcelona continue to lead the race to land Gundogan in the off-season despite their well-publicised financial problems.
Pep Guardiola’s former side have had trouble registering players in recent windows and are at war with the Spanish top flight over their enormous player spending.
City want to keep Gundogan in Manchester but the Germany international is about to enter the final three months of his contract – with no renewal seemingly close.
The former Borussia Dortmund midfielder has made 37 club appearances across all competitions this season, notching four goals and four assists.
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He has worn the captain’s armband on several occasions in the 2022-23 campaign as Guardiola’s side pursue a third consecutive Premier League title and a first Champions League trophy.
Gundogan, who joined Man City in 2016, has racked up 290 appearances for the club – scoring 53 goals.
He has won four Premier League titles, one FA Cup and four League Cups during his time at the Etihad Stadium.
The midfield star has turned out for Germany 66 times – representing Die Mannschaft at two World Cups and two European Championships.
Man City are second in the Premier League to Arsenal by a margin of eight points with 11 games remaining of this season.
Meanwhile, Barcelona are 12 points clear of El Clasico rivals Real Madrid with 12 games remaining in La Liga’s title race.