Manchester City have finally announced the signing of rumoured Manchester United target Ederson from Benfica. The highly-rated 23-year-old Brazilian goalkeeper, full name Ederson Santana de Moraes, will arrive at the Etihad Stadium on 1 July.
Reigning Primeira Liga champions Benfica initially revealed the deal last week, releasing a statement to the Portuguese Stock Market (CMVM) claiming that a €40m (£34.7m, $44.9m) price had been agreed between the two clubs. Half of that fee was to be paid to third parties, with former club Rio Ave said to be set to receive 30% and a £7m cut reportedly going to the Jorge Mendes-founded sports management company Gestifute.
Official confirmation was subsequently delayed as those third-party issues were concluded to the satisfaction of the Premier League. City have now confirmed the arrival of a player who, in terms of pound sterling at least, overtakes Juventus stalwart Gianluigi Buffon as the most expensive goalkeeper of all time.
"I like everything about Manchester City," Ederson said. "This is a great club, the league they have here in England and they have amazing fans and they play splendid football. I have always had the dream to play in English football and now I'm going to make it 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 has 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."
Ederson becomes Guardiola's second major signing of the summer already, with City having completed the £43m capture of Monaco playmaker Bernardo Silva last month. Benjamin Mendy, Kyle Walker, Alexis Sanchez and Virgil van Dijk are among the other players heavily linked with the club as part of a major overhaul of a squad that finished the 2016-17 season in third place and only secured Champions League football on the final day.
Manchester United - as was the case with Silva - were also mentioned in connection with Ederson, with Portuguese outlet O Jogo reporting last month that they were in talks to sign him as a potential replacement for long-term Real Madrid target David de Gea. However, the reigning European champions are now said to have ended that particular pursuit as they instead look to keep faith in current number one Keylor Navas.
With Willy Caballero joining Jesus Navas, Gael Clichy and Bacary Sagna in being released and the returning Joe Hart all but certain to leave on a permanent basis following his season-long loan spell at Torino, Ederson will compete with Claudio Bravo for a starting berth at City. The oft-maligned Chilean, who endured a torrid debut campaign in English football following his move from Barcelona, recently insisted that he was not worried by the increased competition.