Matija Nastasic to Schalke

Manchester City defender Matija Nastasic has joined Schalke on loan for the remainder of the season.

The Bundesliga club confirmed Nastasic’s arrival, while Eurosport provided confirmation in English:

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Sky Italia’s Gianluca Di Marzio suggested the Serbian’s deal could also see him snapped up permanently at the end of the campaign: “Manchester City has agreed to terms with Schalke 04 on a loan deal (€2 million) with option to buy (€12 million) for the centre-back, the former Fiorentina player will earn €2.4 million per season.”

Nastasic joined City during the final day of the 2012 summer transfer window in a deal which saw Stefan Savic move the opposite way to Fiorentina. The 21-year-old enjoyed 21 starts during his debut season in the Premier League, but he has struggled to break into the team since manager Manuel Pellegrini replaced Roberto Mancini.

Indeed, Nastasic has only managed 15 starts across the Chilean’s season-and-a-half in charge. He is yet to make an appearance this campaign.

Schalke boss Roberto Di Matteo is likely to find Nastasic an extremely useful addition to his squad. Football writer Adrian Melville believes he will galvanise the side’s depth:

Schalke are currently fifth in the German division and battling on the Champions League front, which sees the Gelsenkirchen club face European favourites Real Madrid in the round of 16.

Nastasic is a strong tackler, decent in the air and a good reader of the ball. He has the potential to become one of the world’s best, but he needs playing time to continue his development.