Ilkay Gundogan and Manchester City have agreed to a new four-year contract, ensuring the Germany international won't leave the club as a free agent anytime soon.
City confirmed the extension via their official website on Friday. A statement from the midfielder read:
"I am very happy to have signed the new contract.
"I have hugely enjoyed the last three years here at City and everyone at the Club has helped make me feel at home from my very first day.
"It's a privilege to be a part of this team, playing the style of football we do and winning trophies. It's very difficult to do that and I'm delighted to be a part of it.
"I'm really excited about what we can go on to achieve in the next few seasons."
The former Borussia Dortmund man had less than one year left on his previous deal, meaning he was free to sign a pre-contract with a foreign club in January if no new agreement was reached.
Gundogan hinted things wouldn't come to that after the Community Shield win over Liverpool, however, per sports writer Sam Lee:
The 28-year-old arrived at the Etihad Stadium in 2016 after a successful spell with Borussia Dortmund. Injuries have limited his playing time with the Citizens―most notably an ACL rupture during the 2016-17 campaign―but he's been an effective option for the Sky Blues when healthy.
Last season was his best so far in England, making 23 starts in the Premier League and scoring six goals. He frequently played in Fernandinho's spot, keeping the 34-year-old Brazilian rested throughout the season.
The arrival of Rodri in the summer handed manager Pep Guardiola another capable holding midfielder, but Gundogan is versatile enough to slide further up the pitch and play as an attacking midfielder. He should continue to see plenty of playing time as part of the team's regular rotation.
If Gundogan can avoid the injury bug, this is a solid deal for City, who will avoid headaches regarding his future throughout the season.