Manchester City enter race to sign Pedro from Barcelona says Guillem Balague

Guillem Balague says David de Gea did not refuse to play for Manchester United, calling it tactics United are using against Real Madrid.

Manchester City have made a bid to sign Pedro from Barcelona, according to Sky Sports’ Spanish expert Guillem Balague.

Manchester United appeared to be in pole position to land the forward, according to Sky sources, but City have now made a move with champions Chelsea also monitoring the player's situation.

And Balague claims Manuel Pellegrini's side have come in with an offer matching Pedro's buyout clause - although another source has told Sky Sports News HQ that whilst Pedro's is on City's radar they are yet to make a firm offer.

“It’s quite clear Manchester United and Pedro have been speaking for a while,” he said.

“But Manchester City have intervened and are offering more money to Barcelona.

Live Spanish Super Cup

“What Barcelona is saying is ‘we don’t want you to go, but if anybody wants you they’ll have to pay the €30m (£21.4m) of your buyout clause’.

“At the moment, what we understand is that Manchester United are willing to go to €28m (£20m) plus another €2m (£1.4m) in variables, so they’re very close to it.

Also See:

“But City is willing to pay – and this is a recent offer – €30m (£21.4m) plus another €2m (£1.4m), so above the buyout clause.”

Pedro celebrates after scoring the winner for Barcelona in the UEFA Super Cup
Image: Pedro celebrates after scoring the winner for Barcelona in the UEFA Super Cup

Balague also says Pedro is now set on an exit from Barcelona, because the success of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar means he will not get enough time on the pitch.

"The player certainly has decided to leave Barcelona," he added.

"It doesn’t matter what messages are coming from the squad, from the coach, from the club itself – he feels that he wants more minutes.

LvG: Ball in Pedro's court

LvG: Ball in Pedro's court

Louis van Gaal says he is no closer to knowing whether Pedro will join Manchester United.

"He knows he won’t have that at Barcelona because of the quality of the front three. So now the decision is will it be United or City."

With Manchester looking like the 28-year-old's likely destination, Balague says money could be the overriding factor in whether it's a move to City or United.

But the Spanish football expert also believes the long-running interest from United could put them ahead in the race for his signature.

Live Ford Super Sunday

"This is just speculation, but I think United are favourites - partly because of the amount of work that's already been put in over the summer to convince Pedro to move away from Barcelona, but also the project involved and the role in his team.

"But Manchester City are offering Barcelona more money, and it could be that Pedro gets more money from City as well. But it is a decision that will come soon."

Around Sky