The 23-year-old has enjoyed a superb first season in the Premier League after moving to the Seagulls from Getafe last summer in a £15.4m deal.
The Spain international has made 34 starts in the league under Graham Potter and was voted the club’s Player of the Season and Players’ Player of the Season.
Unsurprisingly he has attracted the attention of bigger sides and Pep Guardiola is keen to bring him to the Etihad to add competition at left-back.
The left-back slot at City has been largely shared between Joao Cancelo and Oleksandr Zinchenko this season, although Cancelo’s natural role is on the other side of the defence.
Guardiola and Cucurealla share a Barcelona connection as the Brighton star spent eight years at the club, from 2012-20, never breaking into the first team picture, but rubbing shoulders with superstars during his time there.
‘I was very nervous,’ Cucurella told the Athletic of moving to the Camp Nou. ‘I’d been in the academy at Espanyol for a long time, but it was such a good opportunity. A lot of my family support Barcelona.
‘It’s one of the best clubs in the world. When I was there, they had Messi, Neymar, [Luis] Suarez. The philosophy is the same for all the teams: to play good football, the same movements.
‘It was important for me. A lot of the things I’ve learnt on the pitch came from my Barcelona career. I sometimes trained with the first team, went on tour to the USA in pre-season. When you play with these top players, you learn.
‘At first you are very nervous. I remember when I saw [Javier] Mascherano for the first time, he said, ‘Good morning’ and I didn’t say anything, because I was so nervous.’
Cucurella is under contract at Brighton until 2026 and they will have no interest in letting him go, so it may take more than the reported £30m to encourage the Seagulls to do business.
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