Manchester City are keen to find out whether Bournemouth would be willing to cash in on star centre-back Nathan Ake during the January transfer window, according to Sky Sports, despite recent claims that the Dutchman is valued at a staggering £75 million.
Suggestions that Pep Guardiola’s side are hoping to sign a defender next month will come as a surprise to precisely nobody to has watched the disposed Premier League champions in action during the last few weeks.
City’s title challenge has collapsed in the injury-enforced absence of Aymeric Laporte and, having already fallen 14 points adrift of runaway leaders Liverpool, they look more vulnerable now than at any point since Guardiola’s erratic debut season at the Etihad Stadium.
A commanding yet classy centre-half with proven top-flight quality, Ake would certainly fit the bill for a City side who are crying out for a long-term Vincent Kompany replacement but Bournemouth are never going to let the former Chelsea youngster go on the cheap.
The Sun (7 August, page 50) claimed that Eddie Howe’s side wanted £75 million when Everton came calling late in the summer transfer window and that fee is unlikely to be reduced in January, particularly as Bournemouth appear to have sleepwalked into an unexpected relegation battle.
City, then, would have to shatter their transfer record to bring Ake to the Etihad.
But, with Guardiola claiming that an Abu Dhabi-funded super club simply cannot afford to compete with their biggest rivals in the transfer market these days, the 24-year-old might simply be too expensive.
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