Stuart Pearce has admitted that Shaun Wright-Phillips may not be on the plane as the City squad fly out to Thailand on Sunday night.
And the manager admitted that the situation could move quickly overnight with the twenty-three-year old on the verge of making the move.
"Shaun has expressed a wish to talk to Chelsea," confirmed the manager after watching his side draw 1-1 with Macclesfield.
"Until we agree a fee with Chelsea we cannot allow that to happen. Shaun wanted to play today in the friendly but he had a stomach bug and had to be taken home.
"It is difficult for a young man like Shaun. Chelsea are a big club with a big backer.
"We have to respect a wish from a player. We are understanding at this football club.
"The last thing I think anyone would want is to keep a player that is overly unhappy at the club or to lose one of our best players.
The boss stressed that the story as to where the former Academy star would be playing his football next season could change quickly.
"A great deal could happen tonight or tomorrow morning. We fly tomorrow evening to Thailand and I fully expect Shaun to be on the plane. If something develops in the meantime it would be folly to say he will be with us.
"I don't want to be the manager who is seen as the one who sells Shaun and it would be nice to see him board the plane with us.
"But the bottom line is that he has expressed a wish and it is doubtful that he will be on that plane.
"If something develops and he leaves this football club then I will be very sorry to see him go. I will wish him the best and I am sure the supporters will as well."
And he stressed that now the player has expressed a wish to talk to Chelsea it did not mean that City would drop their estimate of the England man's worth in the transfer market.
"Of course because the player has said he may want this deal to be done does not mean the club will cave in on the deal.
"Shaun and his people have been more than realistic that we have to get the going rate for Shaun Wright-Phillips. That is the bottom line.
"Whilst we are not in the business of keeping players at this football club who are unhappy I think Shaun and his advisers will be acutely that we need to get our valuation for Shaun Wright-Phillips."