Manchester City, Barcelona and Real Madrid ‘in contact’ for Serie A defender – report

Inter centre-back Milan Škriniar is quickly emerging as one of the most coveted young defenders in Europe, and not too long ago he was reported to be a ‘concrete target’ for Manchester City.

City are now set to break their club-record to sign another highly-rated young central defender, Aymeric Laporte of Athletic Bilbao, but today’s edition of the famous pink newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport in Italy suggests there may still be interest in 22-year-old Škriniar.

City, along with fellow European powerhouses Barcelona and Real Madrid, have ‘opened a direct channel’ with Inter concerning the player, the Italian newspaper claims.

Right now, Inter chiefs Walter Sabatini and Piero Ausilio consider a sale impossible, with Inter chasing a return to the Champions League, but there is a feeling that an auction for the Slovakian international will soon begin.

It remains to be seen if City’s interest will remain active after the acquisition of Laporte. If Guardiola feels Vincent Kompany can no longer be relied on, due to his chronic injury concerns, and with Mangala destined to leave at the end of the season, there will be a need for a fourth defender.

However, unless Pep plans to make three-at-the-back a regular thing in future, having Nicolas Otamendi, John Stones, Aymeric Laporte and Milan Škriniar as centre-back options would seem to be one too many big names, and it’d be difficult to keep all four happy.

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