It has been reported that Premier League leaders Manchester City are set to offer Raheem Sterling a bumper new contract at the Etihad Stadium, after the English talisman has blossomed under the watch of Pep Guardiola.
Beginning the initial talks
Life on Eastlands didn't get off to the best of starts for Sterling after his bumper move from Liverpool back in 2015, but the 23-year-old has come into his own under the guidance of Guardiola especially in the new season.
The England international has enjoyed the standout campaign of his career having recorded best scoring tally with 18 goals in all competitions only second to Sergio Agüero, his form only shows the talents that Guardiola holds as he refused to use Sterling as a makeweight in a deal for Arsenal's Alexis Sánchez in the summer.
It is reported that negotiation for Sterling's new contract will begin in February with his current deal not set to run out until the summer of 2020, it is also expected that his wages will take a significant hike to around £250,000-a-week in the top earners band at the club.
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He will add something to the team
Sterling has been one of numerous cogs that has turned The Citizens into the unstoppable force that they have proven to be across all competitions, but despite that it is expected that Guardiola will delve into the transfer window to solidify some positions that have been weakened due to their fixture pile-up.
It is heavily reported that the Catalan is in the market for a defender with West Brom's Jonny Evans the latest to be linked with a move to the blue side of Manchester, but rumours of a possible move for Arsenal's Chilean talisman have once again come to the surface.
Having failed to complete a deal for Sánchez in the summer and with just months left on his contract it would have been expected that Arsenal would take a final chance to cash in, with those rumours intensifying further with many media outlets reporting that a deal between the two clubs was all but complete.
Sánchez is expected to start in tonight's Carabao Cup semi-final with Chelsea and Guardiola dismissed the move following the 2-1 victory over Bristol City, but Kevin De Bruyne insisted that if the 29-year-old was to make the move he would "add something" to an already strong side.
"[He is] a very good player," he said when asked about Sánchez's move. "Obviously we will see what happens in this transfer period."
"If a good player comes to us that is better," the Belgian proclaimed. "If he doesn't come we do it with the team we have."
"We are on a good period already - the whole season. Everybody is doing a good job," De Bruyne concluded. "If he comes he will add something to the team."