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Manchester City weigh up move for £70 million Premier League midfielder following Lucas Paqueta deal collapse



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Premier League champions Manchester City could now turn their attention elsewhere in the division following the failed pursuit of West Ham’s Lucas Paqueta.

The Brazilian midfielder had long been seen as City’s next priority target in the ongoing summer transfer window, having completed deals elsewhere in Pep Guardiola’s squad earlier this summer.

Manchester City moved relatively fast to secure the signings of Josko Gvardiol and Mateo Kovacic from RB Leipzig and Chelsea respectively, but still felt as though the squad required a further two additions for varying factors.

Jeremy Doku is expected to finalise a £55 million move from Stade Rennais this week, while Manchester City continue to be on the search for a new midfielder – a search that intensified following the long-term injury sustained by Kevin De Bruyne earlier this season.

However, following a breakdown in their pursuit of Lucas Paqueta due to an ongoing FA investigation into betting allegations, Manchester City have been forced to look elsewhere and their attentions appear to have remained in the Premier League.

That is according to the information of MailSport’s Jack Gaughan, who states that Manchester City are currently ‘weighing up’ a move for Crystal Palace’s Eberechi Eze, after a deal to land West Ham’s Lucas Paqueta collapsed late on in talks.

It is explained that Eze has been on Manchester City’s radar for the last six months, after senior scouts at the Etihad Stadium were left ‘heavily impressed’ by his control of games for the Selhurst Park club.

While Manchester City sources have reportedly insisted all summer that they have ‘merely retained a watching brief’ of the 25-year-old midfielder, it remains to be seen whether the club formalise interest.

With regards to a possible transfer fee, Jack Gaughan reports that Palace are expected to demand north of £70 million from any potential suitors. However, the player has just two years remaining on his current contract and any possible bid would ‘likely test Palace’s resolve’.

Manchester City have already shown an interest in Crystal Palace talent once before this summer, having identified wide-winger Michael Olise as a potential target to replace Riyad Mahrez following his exit last month.

However, City ultimately opted to successfully intensify interest in Stade Rennais’ Jeremy Doku, while Olise committed to a new long-term deal at the south London club following an interest from Chelsea in activating the player’s £35 million release clause.

Doku is expected to be available for Manchester City in their next Premier League match this weekend, as the Premier League champions travel to Sheffield United with the focus being on maintaining their 100% winning start to the new campaign.