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Manchester City transfer pursuit of £85 million Premier League star suffers fresh setback



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Manchester City’s hopes of potentially signing West Ham star Lucas Paqueta during the January transfer window have been dealt a fresh blow.

Pep Guardiola’s side had been previously linked with potentially reigniting their interest in the 26-year-old this month, after a bombshell FA and FIFA investigation scuppered an £80 million move to the Etihad Stadium during the summer.

Paqueta had emerged as a late summer transfer target for Manchester City after Kevin De Bruyne suffered a long-term hamstring injury, with the Sky Blues agreeing a deal in principle with West Ham in August.

A move to Manchester City was quickly halted after an investigation related to a number of bets by two footballing bodies, with the transfer pursuit stalling as a result of the confidential issue.

The Sky Blues are expected to renew their interest in signing the Hammers star, who moved to the London Stadium for a club-record £51 million in 2022.

Paqueta had been linked with potentially being subject to January transfer interest from Manchester City, with the Brazilian also having an £85 million release clause, which becomes active this year.

The 26-year-old helped West Ham to Europa Conference League glory last season, and has been directly involved in 10 goals for David Moyes’ side already this season.

Any hopes of Manchester City signing Paqueta this month have been dashed however, with the Hammers midfielder set to be sidelined for two months due to a calf injury, suffered during an FA Cup third round tie on Sunday.

The Brazil midfielder suffered a fresh setback against Bristol City, with Paqueta having struggled with calf problems already this season.

Paqueta had reignited transfer talk in September, after the 26-year-old was pictured going over to the Manchester City dugout to shake hands with both Pep Guardiola and Juanma Lillo ahead of a Premier League clash at the London Stadium.