LIVERPOOL, July 12- Manchester City have agreed a transfer fee for Liverpool striker Raheem Sterling, according to Sky sources.
City appear to have finally got their man after Brendan Rodgers’ side reluctantly accepted a bid believed to be around £49m for the England international. The transfer is subject to contract negotiations and a medical.
The want-away forward was left out of Liverpool’s squad which flew out on Sunday for their pre-season tour of Thailand as talks over the big-money switch progressed.
If the move goes through, the transfer would be Britain’s second most expensive signing behind Gareth Bale’s £86m deal from Tottenham in 2013.
Sterling twice failed to report for pre-season training earlier this week, blaming illness, and had reportedly asked Rodgers if he could be left out of the tour.
However, the 20-year-old, who has been at loggerheads with Liverpool since turning down a new contract earlier this year, now appears set to complete his move to the Etihad Stadium.
City had reportedly already failed with two bids for the forward, with the second believed to be around £40m, with Liverpool understood to be holding out for nearer £50m.
Assuming Sterling agree terms with City and passes a medical, his protracted and acrimonious departure from Anfield will finally be sealed.
Sterling’s relationship with Liverpool’s hierarchy has been on a down slope since February, when Rodgers stated his forward had been offered “an incredible deal”.
Two months later Sterling angered the club by confirming, in an unsanctioned interview, that he had turned the contract down.
The impasse deepened when Sterling’s agent, Aidy Ward, claimed the player would not sign even for “£900,000 a week”.
He became embroiled in fresh controversy after photographs emerged of him appearing to puff on a shisha pipe, and then allegedly inhaling nitrous oxide.
His actions have prompted criticism from a host of former Liverpool stars with Steven Gerrard the latest to speak out, the former Anfield skipper revealing he was “not happy with all that carry-on”.
Sterling joined Liverpool from QPR’s academy in 2010 and has made 129 appearances for the club, scoring 23 goals.
He made his senior England debut in 2012 and has scored one goal in 16 appearances.