His defensive partner Eliaquim Mangala has been the subject of fervent speculation this month, but with Porto asking for up to £45m for the Frenchman, many teams have been scared off and may choose to pursue Argentina international Otamendi.
The 25-year-old centre back saw a potential move to Valencia fall through, with Porto's demands too excessive for the La Liga side, and could now move to England, with a number of teams eyeing his services – but with Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea all reportedly lining the former Velez Sarsfield man, who should make a move before the January transfer window deadline?
Manchester City are in the market for a centre back to partner captain Vincent Kompany, having seen Martin Demichelis, Matija Nastasic and Joleon Lescott fail to make the position their own. Lescott could leave the club on loan before Friday night's deadline, with manager Manuel Pellegrini admitting he would allow the England international to find a new club – if he can bring in a suitable replacement. Otamendi would fit the bill, particularly if Porto would allow a loan deal until the end of the season with a view to buy, as they did with Valencia.
Their city rivals United have made the biggest splash of the transfer window with the £37.1m capture of Chelsea playmaker Juan Mata, but there is still plenty of work to be done for manager David Moyes.
There are certainly big question marks in the Red Devils' defence, with experienced duo Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand heading for the Old Trafford exit door when their contract expire at the end of season, whilst Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling and Phil Jones have only shown fleeting examples of their quality. Moyes could certainly stand to improve the United backline, but may require a more experienced head than Otamendi.
Meanwhile, Chelsea have swooped for Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah this month, but boss Jose Mourinho may look to strengthen his centre back options even more. A noted fan of Otamendi, Mourinho could bring in another defender, but with Branislav Ivanovic, Gary Cahill, John Terry and David Luiz all in the mix at Stamford Bridge, it would certainly be difficult for Otamendi to break into the Chelsea team, even with Ivanovic's frequent role at right back.
With all things considered, it may well be that Otamendi's most viable destination is Manchester City, but with Pellegrini's former Villarreal defender Mateo Musacchio now available for £16.5m, the Chilean looks more likely to purchase a different Argentine centre back – leaving Otamendi in no-man's land.
image: © sdhansay