Nathan Ake will remain a Manchester City player this season after a fee arrangement with Chelsea fell through.
Thomas Tuchel wanted to make Ake the second City player to join his project this summer after signing Raheem Sterling for £47.5 million, and Chelsea needed defensive reinforcements after losing two center-backs. Ake broke through at Chelsea, but the club refused to challenge City when they paid £41 million to purchase him from Bournemouth in 2019.
City made it plain from the start that they would only accept a trade if Chelsea offered at least £50 million and the Blues could find a replacement, as Pep Guardiola did not want to leave himself with fewer than four senior center-backs. Despite claims for weeks that Chelsea was confident in a deal, they have suddenly withdrawn from talks after refusing to meet City’s value.
City are obviously thrilled to keep the player, and while Ake was open to a move, the Dutchman is content to stay in a club where he gained in importance last season after avoiding the ailments that derailed his first year in Manchester. The 27-year-old put in a number of superb performances in the centre of defense and at left-back, which helped City win the Premier League and advance in the Champions League.
The title holders can now focus on the remaining business in the transfer window, with left-back being the most active position.