Manchester City have rejected a good bid from Brighton & Hove Albion for teenage prodigy James McAtee, with the club hoping to develop him further.
According to The Athletic, Manchester City have rejected a reasonable £8 million bid from Brighton & Hove Albion for promising teenage starlet James McAtee. The Premier League champions see the youngster as a future first-team prospect and have indicated he is not for sale.
Manchester City lured McAtee from rivals and neighbours Manchester United aged 10, and the player has since gone from strength to strength in his development. Spoken in the same bracket as Phil Foden, many expect McAtee to have a similar impact on the team, much like the England international.
This season, he also made his senior appearance in the Carabao Cup clash against Wycombe, playing as a left-back. After that game, McAtee said, “It was just a buzz. When I came on, I was smiling the whole way through. When I came on, I went left-back.
” Pep said, ‘can you play there?’. I said anything to get on the pitch, and I just tried my hardest. The other players talked to me, helped me out. It was just good to be on the pitch.”
Those words indicate how much he wants to be involved in the first-team and probably dreams of a quick passage into their Premier League squad. However, considering the formidable players already at Guardiola’s disposal at Manchester City, McAtee’s progress into the senior side could be blocked.
This could be a factor in determining his future, and it has been reported that Brighton’s offer tempted McAtee. The Seagulls were optimistic while placing the bid for the promising teenager but may have been surprised by Manchester City’s stance.
McAtee’s current contract expires in 2023, and come next summer, he could have a say in determining his future. Brighton might come back with another offer during that period to see where the player’s future lies. If the teenager thinks he may have to wait plenty of years to get a crack into Guardiola’s team, he might consider a departure.
Either in January or next summer, we’ll have a clear picture of the 18-year-old youngster’s future. Whether it lies at the Etihad or someplace else will be crucial to know. If the player does decide to leave, Manchester City might not be offered the £8 million they rejected, as with his contract winding down, the next bids might be of less value.