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Manchester City set to lose out to Chelsea in race for £50m target – report

Chelsea are confident that they have beaten Manchester City to the signing of in-demand Southampton defender, Virgil van Dijk, according to the Daily Mirror.

The 25-year-old centre-back has been repeatedly linked with a move to City in recent months, with some reports suggesting that Pep Guardiola planned a January bid for the Dutch international before settling on his current options.

There has been much talk of a serious attempt to sign up the £50 million rated player this summer, as City look to rebuild a defence that is expected to undergo major changes ahead of Pep’s second season in charge.

Van Dijk will not be part of that overhaul if John Cross of the Mirror is right with his claim that Antonio Conte is ‘supremely confident’ that he will win the race for Van Dijk ahead of City, Everton and Liverpool.

City have been linked with a host of centre-backs, but Van Dijk would bring Premier League experience having proven himself at a very high level in England. If Van Dijk is Stamford Bridge-bound, Guardiola could turn to the likes of Leonardo Bonucci, Aymeric Laporte and Ben Gibson, all of whom have been in the City rumour mill of late.

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