(Reuters) - Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers has described their England centre back Harry Maguire as a “special player” they do not want to lose but conceded they have no choice after Manchester United met the Midlands club’s valuation.
British media reported on Friday that United had reached an agreement with fellow Premier League team Leicester to sign the 26-year-old England international, with a transfer fee of 80 million pounds (80 million pounds) agreed.
Maguire is expected to agree personal terms and complete a medical at the Old Trafford club over the weekend.
“The clubs have agreed (a fee) and there’s still some work for it to go through. There’s still a bit to go in terms of Harry’s medical and whatever personal things to sort out, but it is what it is,” Rodgers told Sky Sports.
The deal would make Maguire the most expensive defender in the world, surpassing the 75 million pounds Liverpool paid Southampton for Dutch international Virgil van Dijk last year.
“I think it’s an incredible piece of business,” Rodgers added after Leicester’s 2-1 win over Atalanta in a pre-season friendly at the King Power Stadium on Friday.
“This is a guy (Maguire) that knows there has been interest all through the summer and he’s been super professional. He’s been with his team mates right the way through and been a really, really good guy.
“He’s a special player, he’s not a player that we would want to lose. But obviously any player will have a valuation and if ever that is met then of course there’s a discussion between clubs and whether the player wants to stay or go.”
Last year Maguire, who helped England reach the World Cup semi-finals, signed a contract extension at Leicester until 2023. He played 31 league games last term, scoring three goals.
Rodgers previously said the 2016 league champions had rejected two bids last month for Maguire because they did not meet the club’s valuation but they would not stand in the defender’s way once a fee was agreed.
“Football now, that’s how it works, individuals will have their own goals and targets and whatever it is they want to achieve and that’s something that they will always have,” former Liverpool manager Rodgers added.
“We will see how it develops over the weekend and if Harry ends up going then we will have to look at our options.”
The Premier League transfer window shuts on Thursday and Leicester, who finished ninth last season, begin the new campaign at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers on Aug. 11.
Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris