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Man City consider Real Madrid and Southampton midfielders as Jorginho talks drag – reports

Manchester City have identified Mateo Kovačić of Real Madrid and Southampton’s Mario Lemina as alternatives for Jorginho with talks dragging on between the Premier League champions and Napoli.

Despite reports from Gianluca Di Marzio earlier today that the Blues had proposed a new deal worth up to €53million (£46.5million), City have today said NO second offer has been made for the 26-year-old.

According to two well-informed sources, Martin Blackburn and Paul Hirst, City’s bid still stands at £40million, and with Napoli demanding £60million there is still a huge gap between the sides.

And if the impasse isn’t solved, City will look elsewhere, with Kovačić and Lemina, both 24, on Pep Guardiola’s radar.

Despite Southampton’s struggles last season, former Juventus man Lemina impressed in the holding midfield role. Kovačić, meanwhile, is a victim of Real Madrid’s impeccable midfield that drove them to a third successive Champions League, but still managed 36 appearances in all competitions for Zinedine Zidane’s side.

Croatian international Kovačić has a €50million (£43.9million) release clause which, if he was open to a move, could mean a smooth and painless transfer.

Txiki Begiristain will be hoping to reach a compromise with tough-negotiating Napoli, but in the event that fails, alternatives are lined up as Pep Guardiola looks to add one midfielder to replace Yaya Touré at the Etihad.

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