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Chelsea closing in on £60m deal for long-term Manchester City centre-back target

Manchester City have decided not to pursue a deal for Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk this summer because of the Saints demanding a world record fee for a player of that position.

However, that isn’t stopping Premier League champions Chelsea splashing out for the talented 25-year-old, who has been one of the most impressive centre-halves in the English game of recent times.

According to the famed Gianluca Di Marzio of Sky Italia, Van Dijk is moving closer to a move to Stamford Bridge, something that will surely rile Liverpool fans after their infamous blunder when they thought they had the Dutch international.

Di Marzio states that Van Dijk is ‘getting close’ to Chelsea in a deal that is expected to cost £60 million, which would make Van Dijk the most expensive defender of all time. Chelsea could also make Alex Sandro of Juventus the most expensive full-back of all time, with Sky Italia also reporting that Antonio Conte’s team are pressing for the Brazilian’s signature. Like Van Dijk, Sandro has been on City’s radar but they are now in pursuit of Benjamin Mendy of Monaco.

City are in ‘wait and see’ mode concerning centre-backs, with the priority being full-backs and Alexis Sanchez following the acquisitions of goalkeeper Ederson Moraes and midfielder Bernardo Silva. If Chelsea do sign Van Dijk, it could give City a free run at Pep Guardiola favourite Leonardo Bonucci, who it is reported that Juventus are willing to sell for around €50 million this summer.

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2017-18 Manchester City home kit

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