Arsenal have reportedly offered Alexis Sanchez a £180,000-per-week contract—£70,000 less than the Chilean is hoping for—amid former Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini's revelation that the Sky Blues only missed out on him when he left Barcelona because of City's Financial Fair Play restrictions.
According to the Mirror's John Cross, the Gunners' proposed deal falls well short of the £250,000 Sanchez is targeting, and negotiations could drag on into the forward's final 12 months at the club if the two sides are unable to come to an agreement.
Meanwhile, Pellegrini told Chilean radio station ADN (h/t the Mirror): "He was a major player we wanted to take to City. We could not take him before he signed for Arsenal, it was because the club was punished for Financial Fair Play. I did not have the space in the squad for him."
The Citizens have recently been linked with a move for Sanchez. James Robson of the Manchester Evening News reported that City manager Pep Guardiola is a "confirmed admirer" of his and that there is an "increasing belief he will target a reunion with the player he signed during his time at Barcelona."
The 27-year-old has been in sublime form of late, as OptaJoe noted:
Indeed, after moving to a striking role this season, he has notched a superb 14 goals and 11 assists in 22 matches in all competitions.
Goal's Chris Wheatley hailed his performance after he bagged a hat-trick against West Ham United earlier in December:
After signing Nolito and Leroy Sane in the summer and with Gabriel Jesus arriving in January, the Citizens have plenty of firepower to call upon.
However, Sanchez is an upgrade on all of their forwards save perhaps Sergio Aguero, who is somewhat injury-prone and has become something of a suspension risk this season—he is currently serving a four-match ban, having already been suspended for three games for elbowing Winston Reid earlier in the season.
FFP is also less of a concern now than it used to be after UEFA relaxed its rules on the matter, not to mention the enormous influx of TV revenue City receive each season for playing in the Premier League, so the Sky Blues would likely have no qualms about meeting Sanchez's demands.
A move nevertheless seems unlikely, but the longer Arsenal's negotiations with Sanchez are dragged out, the more speculation will increase over his future—the forward is a star player, and it's imperative they keep hold of him.
Meanwhile, according to Mundo Deportivo (h/t the MailOnline's Jonathan Spencer), Serie A trio Roma, Napoli and Inter Milan are interested in signing Gael Clichy, whose deal runs out at the end of the season.
Clichy has been a fairly solid player for the Sky Blues during his years at the Etihad Stadium, but the Frenchman will be 32 next summer, so a move away seems to be for the best, with some fresh blood needed at City.
If he isn't handed a new deal, it seems he'll have a number of strong options to choose from as his next and potentially final club.