Barcelona have revealed they have “the beginning of an agreement with Manchester City for Claudio Bravo”.
City manager Pep Guardiola, who coached Barcelona from 2008-2012, has reportedly been on the lookout for a new goalkeeper, having started the first two Premier League games of his reign with Willy Caballero between the posts ahead of England international Joe Hart.
Barca’s other goalkeeper, Marc-Andre ter-Stegen, has also been linked with a switch to the Etihad Stadium.
Chile international Bravo, 33, was twice beaten by Real Betis in the Catalan club’s 6-2 LaLiga victory at the Nou Camp on Saturday evening, and, speaking afterwards, technical secretary Robert Fernandez – quoted on Barcelona’s official Twitter account – said:
“We have the beginning of an agreement with Manchester City for Claudio Bravo.
“We are awaiting events this week. When Claudio leaves, we hope to have a new keeper.”
Luis Suarez scored a hat-trick as Barca convincingly began their title defence and pursuit of a third successive title. Lionel Messi added two further goals, while Arda Turan scored once as Betis were outclassed.
The result means coach Luis Enrique can likely expect his team to remain top of LaLiga at the end of the opening weekend of the season.
He praised his goalscorers’ latest impressive contribution – Barca recently won the Spanish Supercopa over two legs against Sevilla – before indicating they could yet add a further signing to their squad.
Samuel Umtiti and Denis Suarez were given their league debuts from the start, while fellow summer recruit Lucas Digne came off the bench.