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Inter Milan hold meeting with intermediaries of Man City defender Eliaquim Mangala – report

Earlier today, Corriere dello Sport in Italy reported that Inter had become the second side to be offered Manchester City defender Eliaquim Mangala, with Juventus also given the option to sign him.

The situation seems to have progressed since then with TMW revealing in an exclusive report that a daytime meeting was held earlier between Inter bosses and intermediaries of Mangala.

Unlike Juventus, Inter seem to have some interest in acquiring the 26-year-old French international, but in typical Italian style, would prefer not to purchase him right away. Negotiations today were based around a loan deal that would give the Nerazzurri an option to buy Mangala next summer.

This would be an identical deal to the one Valencia struck with City, but the Spanish club could not afford to buy Mangala due to Financial Fair Play concerns. With two years left on his contract, there is no immediate danger of City losing the centre-back on a free transfer if they sanction another loan move.

Should Mangala leave, it would almost certainly mean that Pep Guardiola has another centre-back on the way in. Mangala was on the bench against Brighton and as it stands, is the main back-up option whenever City play three at the back, as they did throughout the 2-0 win over Brighton.

Links to Virgil van Dijk have resurfaced in the past day, but he would prove very costly. Middlesbrough captain Ben Gibson has been linked and would be a cheaper option if there is any truth to reports that City have an interest in the 24-year-old.

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