BARCELONA, July 14 (Reuters) - Spain international Nolito is nearing a return to his home country with Spanish media reporting the forward is on the verge of a 10 million euro ($11.45 million) switch from Manchester City to Sevilla after an unhappy Premier League campaign.
Sevilla, who finished fourth place in La Liga last season, have intensified their pursuit of Nolito, 30, after selling influential forward Vitolo to Atletico Madrid for 36 million euros on Wednesday.
The expected sale of Nolito represents a substantial financial loss for City, who signed him from Celta Vigo last summer for a reported 18 million euros.
Nolito’s move to Sevilla will see him reunited with Eduardo Berizzo, his former coach at Celta who oversaw his two best campaigns between 2014 and 2016, leading to his first call-up for Spain in 2014.
The forward got off to a strong start at City, scoring twice in his second league appearance, a 4-1 win at Stoke City. However, he went on to make only nine league starts in total and none of those were in 2017.
The Spaniard did not hide his desire to leave City when speaking to reporters in May. “I‘m crazy to return to Spain, I’d like to leave Manchester City whether it’s on loan or permanently, whichever way possible,” he said.
“Up until December I was playing and was happy, but after those four months I’ve hardly played. It’s been a year to forget, an experience that hasn’t turned out as I’d planned, but hopefully this summer we’ll find a solution.” ($1 = 0.8734 euros) (Reporting by Richard Martin; Editing by Christian Radnedge)