FC Schalke have confirmed their interest in signing Manchester City defender Matija Nastasic.
21-year old Matija Nastasic is yet to make a Premier League appearance for Manchester City this season and rumours of the Serbian leaving the club in January are gathering strength. It is believed that the defender has already been offered to Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur for £5 million.
Nastasic, 21, joined Manchester City from Forentina in 2012 and had a bright start to his Premier League career. However, the majority of 2013-14 campaign through injury. The player is yet to make a Premier League appearance this season and looks on his way to the exit door.
According to reports, Nastasic was also offered to Arsenal and Tottenham for €6m in November, although the centre-back’s €95,000-a-week salary has proved to be a stumbling block in negotiations. Inter were also believed to have shown interest in signing the defender on loan in December.
Recent reports indicate that Schalke are now working on a deal to sign Nastasic. The fee is rumoured to be in the region of €12 million. Schalke chief Clemens Tonnies told Bild that the Serbian international is very keen about the move.
“Yes, we are after him,” Tonnies said. “Our coach, Roberto Di Matteo, has him in his plans. Also, the player absolutely wants to come to us.”
It is reported that Schalke would initially seek a loan arrangement for Nastasic, who is under contract until 2017.
The move is highly likely to happen if both Schalke and Nastasic are keen on it. Nastasic was once viewed as a promising future prospect considering his performances after making a move to Manchester City from Fiorentina. However, the player missed a major part of the 2013-14 campaign through injury.
Nastasic’s chances of making the first team received a further blow after the arrival of Eliaquim Mangala from Porto for a reported £31.8 million transfer fee. The presence of Vincent Kompany, Demechelis and the big-money transfer of Mangala made it difficult for Nastasic to make it to the first team.
Nastasic made 21 Premier League appearances for Manchester City in the 2012-13 season averaging 1.4 tackles and 1.3 interceptions per game.
Schalke currently sit fifth in the Bundesliga and will face Real Madrid in the last 16 of the Champions League in February.
Manchester City are chasing Chelsea in the Premier League title race placed second, 3 points behind the league leaders. City will face Barcelona in the last 16 of the Champions League in February.