England international joins on five year deal
City have announced the signing of Raheem Sterling, in a deal believed to be worth up to £49m with add-ons. City's two previous bid, worth £30m and £40m respectively, were rejcted by the Anfield club, but a deal seemed inevitable with Sterling's position on Merseyside increasingly untenable.
The 20-year-old had refused to sign a £100,000 a week contract extension, and angered Liverpool with an interview given to the BBC at the end of last season. His agent, Aidy Ward, added to the controvery by claiming the player wouldn't sign a new deal even if he were offered £900,000 a week.
Sterling joined Liverpool from QPR in 2010, and made his first team debut in 2012. He went on to score 18 goals in 91 appearances for the club, and won the European "Golden Boy" award in 2014, a prestigous award given to the best under 21 player in Europe.
The signing of Sterling represents a coup for City, and helps boost the club's homegrown quota. His pace and ability to beat a man will add another dimension to City's attack, as manager Manuel Pellegrini seeks to reclaim the Premiership title from Chelsea next season.
Pellegrini praised Sterling, saying he“ is one of the best attacking players in world football, and I am very much looking forward to him joining our squad out in Australia later this week.
“He is a young player with outstanding ability, and I am sure the Manchester City fans will be very excited about seeing him in action for the team."
The £49m deal is a club record, beating the previous record of £38m spent on Sergio Aguero in 2011. Having been freed from FFP restrictions recently, City are expected to pursue further deals for Kevin de Bruyne and Paul Pogba in the coming days.