After months of speculation, Ederson has finally been unveiled as a Manchester City player. Pep Guardiola’s side have spent €40 million (£34.7 million) to acquire the young shot-stopper, making him the most expensive goalkeeper in history in Pound Sterling, and the second most expensive in Euros. Ederson has penned a six-year contract, and his move will become official on July 1st.
The 23-year old becomes the Encarnados’ joint highest sale; Belgian midfielder Axel Witsel was sold to Zenit Saint Petersburg in September 2012 for an identical fee.
Benfica announced that an agreement had been reached with City last Thursday, but the transfer was postponed for a week while the Premier League ratified the deal. The delay was due to Ederson’s complex ownership; 30% of the €40 million fee will go to the player’s former club Rio Ave, while 20% will go to Gestifute, the agency fronted by Portuguese super-agent Jorge Mendes.
Negotiations between the Eagles and Rio Ave are still ongoing. Record and A Bola report that Rio Ave may forego the full €12 million for a cash-plus-players deal involving Nuno Santos and Pelé. 22-year old Santos spent the 2016/17 season on loan at Vitória de Setúbal, as he made his comeback from the cruciate ligament injury he sustained with Benfica B in December 2015. 25-year old Pelé was set to join Wolverhampton Wanderers last summer before the move was scuppered by a fractured foot. Instead he was loaned out to Primeira Liga Feirense, for whom he played just 10 minutes of football, against Sporting on the penultimate game of the season.
Ederson will hope to make his senior international debut when Brazil take on Argentina and Australia in the next few days. He was part of Tite’s previous squad back in March, but was overlooked in favour of Roma’s second-choice stopper Alisson. He may also have to cope with some sleepless nights after becoming a father on Tuesday. His daughter was born at the Hospital da Luz in Lisbon.
Speaking to Manchester City’s in-house television channel CityTV, Ederson revealed his satisfaction at sealing his transfer to the 2013/14 Premier League champions.
“I like everything about Manchester City. This is a great club. (I like) the league they have here in England, they have amazing fans, and they play splendid football. I have always had the dream of playing in English football and now I'm going to make it come true.”
“With Pep Guardiola, City are growing more and more. He is putting in place a young team for the future. Those were important factors in making my decision.”
“Manchester City have an amazing squad. I think they managed to have a good season. Next season, we will have to be focused to achieve the goal of winning trophies.”
The Brazilian gave his first interview to CityTV in Portuguese. He will now need to master the English language and stave off competition from Claudio Bravo in order to establish himself as The Citizen’s number one. Joe Hart has completed his loan spell at Torino, but is unlikely to play for the Manchester club again.
Ederson is Guardiola’s second big-money buy of the summer, following the recruitment of Benfica academy graduate Bernardo Silva from AS Monaco in May.