It's pretty rare for players to be involved in the mechanics of transfer dealings, but it appears that Manchester City have an unlikely hero to thank for the £100million signing of Jack Grealish.
The popular England man is expected to complete a much-anticipated move from Aston Villa to City on Thursday and in doing so become the most expensive British transfer of all-time.
Rewind the clock 12 months and it was actually cross-city rivals Manchester United that were the favourites to secure the midfielder's signature, although they turned down the chance to complete a £70 million deal.
In November 2020, a Nation's League clash between England and Belgium set up the meeting that would change Grealish's future.
During that 2-0 Belgium win, City's Kevin De Bruyne was so impressed by what he saw from Grealish that he started excitedly texting Pep Guardiola, according to The Independent.
The Blues' maestro insisted that the club should bring in the playmaker, giving off the air of someone texting a friend about a crush. Before long Guardiola was sold on the idea and the wheels for a potential deal were set in motion.
The admiration appears to be mutual. Speaking to VillaTV last season, Grealish said: "I'm half starstruck when I play against Kevin De Bruyne because he's my favourite player ever. I think he's unbelievable, I think he's easily the best player in the Premier League at the moment."
It has been reported that Grealish and De Bruyne have kept in touch ever since, striking up a friendship that can only be good for on-the-pitch chemistry.
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The pair were among the top four assist providers in the Premier League last season, making the prospect of them lining up together for City this season a mouthwatering one.
It is believed that Guardiola plans to deploy his knew weapon in a number 8 role, either alongside De Bruyne or behind him, should the Belgian line up as a false 9.
But regardless of where they play, City fans can't wait to see two of the Premier League's best creators playing for their club.