Cyclingnews understands that Team Sky would also like to sign Cavendish's key lead-out men Bernhard Eisel and Mark Renshaw. However, both are under contract with HTC-Highroad for 2012 after agreeing new deals at the end of the 2010 Tour de France.
Under UCI rules riders and team cannot announce new contracts until August 1 however the Daily Mail claims Cavendish will earn £1.5m a year, doubling his current salary.
Team Sky was created with the goal of winning the Tour de France within five years but after a difficult first year the British team has now set wider goals. Team manager Dave Brailsford has always refused to comment on possible rider signings but is rumoured to planning a major overhaul of its squad for 2012.
Cyclingnews understands that Cavendish’s current contract with HTC-Highroad prohibits him from talking about any future team.
He is currently riding the Tour de Suisse and responded to the news via Twitter, saying: “As always, I can't go 1 race without some sort of shit going on. At least it's not a crash this time! I will say I'm committed ….@HTCHighroad until the end of this year, and I'm concentrating now on TourDeFrance. Also, please note, all quotes are 9 months old.”
This article was originally published on Cyclingnews.com.