Manchester City are reportedly preparing a massive bid to sign Ross Barkley from Everton in the ongoing transfer window.
The Daily Mirror reports that the Citizens are weighing up a bid of £25m in cash and are ready to send Jack Rodwell in exchange for the England international. City manager Manuel Pellegrini is said to be taking a plunge in the market for adding a midfield powerhouse in the mould of Yaya Toure.
Barkley shot to fame with some dazzling performances for Roberto Martinez's side last season, including a sensational goal against City at Goodison Park in May. He made 34 Premier League appearances, scoring six goals in the process, and was nominated for PFA Young Player of the Year award.
The English champions have already signed Fernando Reges from FC Porto and are closing in on a deal for Bruno Zuculini from Argentinian outfit Racing Club de Avellaneda. With Fernandinho and Javi Garcia already on their roster, City are willing to let Rodwell leave just two years after signing him from Everton for £12m.
The 23-year-old is desperately keen on leaving the Etihad after making just 11 appearances in all competitions, six of which have been from the bench. Along with Everton, Newcastle United and West Bromwich Albion are also reportedly interested in signing the midfielder.
But Rodwell prefers to move back to his boyhood club in the belief that Martinez can revive his career and City plan to utilise this opportunity for acquiring Barkley's services.
Additionally, they are struggling to meet the number of players that fit the 'home grown' criteria following the departure of Joleon Lescott and Gareth Barry while Micah Richards and Scott Sinclair are likely to follow suit.
Should Barkley move to the Etihad, he would be gunning for first team opportunities and Pellegrini will have to relegate others to the bench to accommodate the Liverpool-born midfielder in his starting lineup.
The 20-year-old was highly instrumental in helping Everton finish fifth in the table last campaign and the former Wigan Athletic boss is not keen on losing his prized asset. The Spaniard has already expressed his intentions to hold on to Barkley, who still has two years left in his current contract, by saying that he will not be sold during the summer.