Man City Centre-Back Faces Uncertain Future - Player 'Yet To Be Told' What Plans Are In Place
Itakura signed for Manchester City and the City Football Group from Japanese side Kawasaki Frontale in January 2019, and was immediately loaned out to Dutch outfit FC Groningen upon his arrival.
Itakura endured an unconvincing start at the Dutch side before later establishing himself as a key player and subsequently earned a call-up to the Japanese national side - making his debut at the 2019 Copa America as a starter, and played the full 90 minutes as Japan earned a draw against Uruguay.
Having played with FC Groningen since January 2019, Ko Itakura is now headed towards the Etihad Stadium, however the player himself is unsure of where his footballing future lies.
According to an interview with Itakura on FC Groningen’s official website, translated and relayed by Sport Witness, the Japanese defender ‘is yet to be told what the club will be doing with him’ when he returns to the club.
It is currently unknown whether Itakura will remain in Manchester with Pep Guardiola's squad - which remains unlikely at this stage - or if he will be loaned out once more by the club and the parent company.
Celtic have been strongly linked with a move for Itakura, according to reports by the Daily Record, with the publication stating that new boss Ange Postecoglou is ‘well aware’ of the player's capabilities from his time managing in Japan.
A permanent move away from Manchester City is a possibility for Itakura, given the Premier League champions' strength in depth at the back, as well as their desire to raise funds.
The club are continuing to chase the likes of Tottenham star Harry Kane and Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish. However, another loan move as opposed to a permanent deal for Itakura seems more likely.
Follow us on Twitter for live transfer updates: @City_Xtra