ALEX ZINCHENKO is set to be rewarded for turning round his Manchester City career with an extended stay at the Etihad.
The Ukrainian looked bound for the exit last summer when a £16million fee was agreed with Wolves – and Real Betis were also keen.
Getty – Contributor2 Alex Zinchenko was on the brink of leaving last summer, to join Wolves, but has spectacularly revived his Manchester City fortunes
But he has forced his way into Pep Guardiola's plans with some outstanding displays as an emergency left-back in recent months.
So City have now shelved plans to sell the 22-year-old during the close season – and will instead open talks over an improved deal.
City have been looking to sign up their young stars for the long-term with Bernardo Silva this week following the likes of Raheem Sterling, Ederson, Aymeric Laporte and Gabriel Jesus.
Leroy Sane and Ilkay Gundogan are next on City’s list to sort out.
AFP or licensors2 Ukraine wideman Alex Zinchenko now feels at home at the Etihad, albeit more as a left-back, after struggling to break into the team
Zinchenko has just over 12 months left on the contract he signed when he moved from Ufa in his homeland for a bargain £1.7 million in summer 2016.
But Guardiola has decided he wants Zinchenko to be part of his plans going forward – particularly in light of Benjamin Mendy's continued injury problems.