Raheem Sterling close to €53 million move to Chelsea after agreeing personal terms

London club aiming to finalise fee for Manchester City and England forward

Chelsea are closing in on the signing of Raheem Sterling after agreeing personal terms with the Manchester City forward.

Sterling has told City it is the right time for him to leave and he is expected to become the first marquee signing under the new ownership at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea are aiming to finalise a fee of about €53 million (£45m) in the next 24 hours and they hope the England international will join the squad when they fly to the United States for their pre-season tour on Saturday.

The deal would be a major boost for Thomas Tuchel, who has held constructive talks with Sterling about where he plans to use him. Chelsea lacked ruthlessness last season and need additions in attack after allowing Romelu Lukaku to return to Internazionale on loan.

Sterling, who has won four Premier League titles since joining City from Liverpool in 2015, will hope to boost Chelsea’s cutting edge. The 27-year-old, who attracted interest from Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern Munich, scored 17 goals last season.

However Sterling has not been a regular starter for Pep Guardiola’s side in the biggest games over the past two years and wants to leave City, who have sold Gabriel Jesus to Arsenal for €53 million, to play more regularly. Sterling, whose contract runs out next year, has received assurances from Tuchel that he will be a key player at Chelsea.

He has not fallen out with the club and he is thankful to Guardiola for improving his tactical awareness, but his thinking is not based around money. Sterling, whose €410,000 a week contract runs out next year, has received assurances from Tuchel that he will be a key player at Chelsea. - Guardian