Manchester City identify next centre-back signing after Thursday scouting mission – report

Manchester City may have found their long-term successor to Vincent Kompany (unless you consider that to be John Stones) after scouting and adding a France under-21 international to their transfer shortlist.

According to Alan Nixon of The Sun, the Blues have identified Lyon centre-back, Mouctar Diakhaby, as an ideal addition Pep Guardiola’s talented squad and could soon make a move for him.

Diakhaby is a towering figure at over 6’3″ tall but with the height and physicality comes pace and impressive technical ability, with the youngster having a 86.6% pass success rate this season.

Manchester City sporting director Txiki Begiristain and Mikel Arteta, a member of Pep’s coaching staff, were spotted in the crowd on Thursday night to observe Lyon’s win over Everton at Goodison Park in the Europa League. And their eyes were reportedly fixed on the promising defender.

It’s unlikely that they were there to watch Everton, with no obvious transfer candidates in Ronald Koeman’s squad and no game coming up against them – adding credibility to the story that the pair were monitoring Diakhaby.

John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi have formed an excellent partnership at the back for City, but Guardiola is very short on depth in the position due to Vincent Kompany’s ongoing injury problems. Having missed out on Jonny Evans on deadline day, Pep was forced to keep Eliaquim Mangala, a defender he doesn’t seem too high on having sanctioned his departure two years running. The only other option is young local boy Tosin Adarabioyo who is largely untested at the top level.

Could Mouctar Diakhaby be the answer and next addition to City’s defensive ranks? This may be one to keep an eye on in the coming months…

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