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Manchester City ‘closely following’ performances of four Real Sociedad stars – player with €60 million clause detailed



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Premier League champions Manchester City are reportedly monitoring the performances of four stars within the Real Sociedad squad.

The quartet of La Liga talents become the latest in a long line of global profiles being linked with interest from the Etihad Stadium, as Manchester City gear up for what is expected to be a busy summer market this year.

That business is likely to centre around Pep Guardiola’s central midfield, with Kalvin Phillips – currently on loan at West Ham – and Bernardo Silva both tipped for exits in the coming months, albeit the latter dependant on the player’s happiness at City.

As such, that would likely see Manchester City turn to the transfer window to strengthen and recruit in both an attacking and defensive midfield role, with mainstay holding option Rodri in desperate need of an able back-up throughout the course of a 60-game season.

The latest transfer stories have tied Manchester City with an interest in four names from La Liga, with the Premier League champions reportedly monitoring their performances alongside a number of other clubs at the top of the European game.

That is according to the information of Deportes COPE Gipuzkoa, who report that City are among several clubs to be ‘closely following’ the performances of Mikel Merino, alongside his Real Sociedad teammates Martín Zubimendi, Takefusa Kubo, and Robin Le Normand

The situation concerning Merino is of most interest however, with his representatives reportedly deciding not to ‘activate a definitive response’ on contract negotiations until Sociedad’s place in European football is confirmed, amid widespread interest in the player.

Alongside Manchester City being named as a monitoring party concerning Merino, the likes of Juventus, Manchester United, and fellow La Liga side Atletico Madrid are also listed as potential suitors for the summer market.

At present, Mikel Merino is said to have a €60 million release clause at Real Sociedad. However, COPE report that given the player’s current contract expires in the summer of 2025, that situation could make a possible departure cheaper.

Interestingly when it comes to the players mentioned, they all cover a variety of bases within a starting line-up, with Merino and Zubimendi viewed by many as being defensive-minded in the centre of midfield.

Despite being just 22-years-old, Takefusa Kubo is highly-rated in the Spanish game and has been for a while, having represented both Barcelona and Real Madrid at youth and senior levels respectively.

Despite his relative youth, Kubo has been in the senior professional game for a number of years and the Japanese international is regarded very highly by a number of clubs, scoring seven goals and providing four assists across his appearances in all competitions this season.

Robin Le Normand is the only player in the aforementioned quartet not to operate in a midfield role, with the 27-year-old Frenchman starring in central defence. However, at present, Pep Guardiola has a wide range of options at his disposal in this role, and as such a move for the player seems unlikely at the moment.