Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has confirmed versatile defender Aleksandar Kolarov has asked the club to sanction his sale as he is keen on completing a switch to AS Roma.
The 31-year-old impressed under the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich manager at the Etihad. He made 29 appearances in the Premier League and took his overall tally to 38 appearances across all competitions.
Kolarov joined City from Lazio in 2010 and after spending seven years in England, the Serbian international has surprised Guardiola by urging his employers to sanction his transfer. He will return to Rome, where he will join his former club's local rivals.
The Catalan manager stressed that he is not keen on retaining players at City against their will.
"Kolarov is one step to go to Roma. That's why we don't have any other options [at left back]," Guardiola was quoted as saying by the Mirror.
"I don't like to work with people who don't want to stay. Kola helped me a lot last season in terms of many, many things. But he had a big chance to go back to Rome where he was before and he spoke to me, the club and asked me to leave.
"I don't like to stay with players who don't want to stay. That's why its the best option for everybody. I wish him all the best because he's a really nice guy. We had an excellent relationship. I was very pleased to train him and I wish him and his family the best."
According to Sky in Italy via Sky Sports, City will earn around £5.8m ($7.5m) from Kolarov's sale. His exit will see him join Pablo Zabaleta, Bacary Sagna and Gael Clichy in the list of full-backs to leave the Etihad this summer.
Guardiola targets 'two to three defenders'
City completed the deal for Kyle Walker as the England international moved to Manchester from Tottenham Hotspur. Despite his arrival, Guardiola has stressed that he wants to bring in "two to three" defenders in the summer transfer window.
"We need defenders. We need two or three defenders," the City manager stressed.
"Of course we would like to have the players as soon as possible. We know the transfer market and how complicated it is and we are going to find the best solution.
"The season is so long. Of course we would like to have the players as soon as possible. We have 11 months, so many games to play and it's important, but they will arrive when they arrive.
"If it's not possible to arrive we will find an alternative solution we knew the situation at the end of the season. But we knew that from the beginning because the market is so complicated with the clubs and we need to find the best solution to help us to improve."