Multiple sources are now reporting that Manchester City are on the verge of signing USA goalkeeper Zack Steffen from Columbus Crew for a fee that will be somewhere between $7 million (£5.5 million) and $10 million (£7.8 million).
Steffen’s move to the Premier League champions will be one of the biggest in MLS history, but the chances of the 6-cap USA international immediately getting a work permit appear slim.
In the likely event that they don’t acquire a permit for him right away, City will be sending the highly-rated 23-year-old – considered one of America’s best goalkeeping talents in many years – out on loan.
And according to Massive Report and what they have learned, Steffen will be sent to Nice in France’s Ligue 1.
Nice are coached by Patrick Vieira, who was formerly in charge of City’s Elite Development Squad and MLS side New York City FC, so he will be well informed about Steffen’s talents and will be tasked with continuing the player’s development.
The long-term plan for Steffen is to have him replace Claudio Bravo as City’s second-choice goalkeeper and compete with Ederson, while playing cup games. For now, Aro Muric has that role with Bravo injured long-term, and it remains to be seen if Bravo will be kept on next season.