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Manchester City set to spend over £50m on Athletic Bilbao or PSG defender

Manchester City are reportedly back in the race to sign Athletic Bilbao defender Aymeric Laporte, 23, according to The Independent. The Blues failed in their attempts to lure the centre back to the Etihad last summer with the Frenchman instead opting to sign a new four year deal with the Spanish club including a release clause of £55million.

City have shown that they are not afraid to spend big money on their top targets in recent years and the hefty price-tag for the defender may not prove too much of a hurdle in the Blues pursuit for their man. Another potential factor that could influence Laporte’s decision to make the transfer to Manchester is the recent move of Athletic Bilbao manager to Barcelona. With the team’s manager moving on to greener pastures, perhaps some of the players may follow suit.

Should City fail to tempt Laporte to join Pep’s project, Paris Saint-Germain’s Marquinhos would provide an exciting alternative. The 23-year-old moved to PSG in 2013 and is regarded as one of the most promising defenders in Europe with Manchester United and Barcelona also reported to be interested in his signature. The Brazilian centre back is contracted to PSG until 2019 and so it is believed that it would take an offer of £50million or above to tempt the Parisian club to sell.

Manchester City have started the summer quickly and decisively having already signed Bernardo Silva from Monaco and are reportedly closing in on goalkeeper Ederson Moraes from Benfica and left back Benjamin Mendy from Monaco in deals that could be concluded as early as this week.

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