Report: Real Madrid and Manchester City keen to grab Spanish starlet Gaya

Mestalla Valencia

The young left-back is in contract extension talks with Valencia, but could be lured away this summer.

More than a few eyebrows were raised last summer when Valencia accepted an offer from Bayern Munich for their highly talented left-back, Juan Bernat, who has since stepped up from the Spain Under-21 side to earn his first full international caps.

However, Valencia had a plan and another of their supremely talented prospects was waiting quite literally in the wings: Jose Luis Gaya.

Having already made one appearance with the first-team in La Liga, during the 2013-14 campaign, the 19-year-old has stepped forth with aplomb this season, making himself the undisputed first-choice at left-back or as a wing-back, depending on which system manager Nuno Espirito Santo has favoured.

Keen to lock Gaya down to a new deal, in order to ward off the understandably high level of interest in the player from elsewhere, talks have been ongoing between Valencia and his agents, but there may be a problem with a new release clause valuation, which currently prices him at €18 million.

Valencia are prepared to make Gaya one of the highest paid players in the squad, but at a press call on Wednesday to announce a contract renewal for Javi Fuego, general manager Francisco Rufete was questioned on how close the club is to sealing a new deal for Gaya.

He responded frankly: "Neither near nor far, talks simply remain open. Every negotiation takes its time, has its circumstances and context. We're keen to advance things, we have the willingness because we know what we want. Gaya and his agents have the same willingness.

"Negotiations aren't just about a quantity (of salary) or a clause valuation. We have a plan and they also have their point of view. We're not setting a time limit, but we do want to advance things in a direction that suits all concerned." Rufete underlined.

Meanwhile and according to sports daily, AS, there's another good reason for the stall in talks between Gaya, his agents and Valencia. Namely that Real Madrid have the player outlined as their number one left-back reinforcement target this summer, whilst Manchester City are also hovering with considerable alertness, along with Chelsea, who have also been linked.

The reports suggest that both Real Madrid and Manchester City have been in contact with Toldra Consulting, the agency representing Gaya, who have apparently ruled out any move if the young star does pen a new deal with Valencia. Chelsea are also said to be monitoring the situation.

It seems Real Madrid are prepared to let Fabio Coentrao move on this summer, so are keen to swoop for Gaya as his direct replacement, providing cover and a challenge for the first-team spot of Brazilian left-back, Marcelo.

According to suggestions in UK outlets such as the Guardian, with Manchester City planning an overhaul of their squad at the end of this season, Aleksandar Kolarov could be departing, meaning they are in the market for an alternative option, leaving the young Valencia player also firmly on their radar.

Chelsea are believed to be interested in snapping up Gaya if they can secure a deal matching his current release clause valuation of €18 million, plus they have been keeping a keen eye on him this season, according to a variety of outlets in both Spain and the UK, such as the Daily Mail.

One thing that is clear, however, is that Valencia owner Peter Lim wants to ensure Gaya remains at the club, having reportedly instructed club president Amadeo Salvo, to make closing the contract renewal the number one priority for the sports directive.

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