Premier League giants Manchester City still look to be on track for an easy league title this season, but that hasn’t stopped Pep Guardiola from dipping his toes into the murky pool of January transfer rumours.
It’s a centre back that Pep wants apparently, and Athletic Bilbao’s Aymeric Laporte is the man at the top of the Cityzens’ shopping list, according to the Sun. The Spanish coach has reportedly been a long-term fan of the defender, but may have to pay the £60m release clause to secure Laporte’s services.
Despite finding themselves 12 points above Manchester United at the top of the table, City have had their struggles in defence this season. Vincent Kompany’s inconsistent fitness and Eliaquim Mangala’s poor form perhaps warrant the purchase of a new centre half.
Laporte meanwhile is in his sixth season at Bilbao, having become only the club’s second ever non-Basque player, and has featured 19 times in La Liga this season. At just 23-years old the Frenchman has a lot of room to grow, though he has already established himself as a top tier talent.
The addition of the defender to City’s squad would allow them to better conserve leads in tight games for the remainder of the season, which is exactly what they need in order to continue their title quest.