According to L’Equipe, Birmingham City and Bristol City are battling to sign Raphael Diarra who is out of contract at current club Quevilly-Rouen Metropole.

The former France U20 international is seemingly set to leave this summer.

Diarra came through the youth ranks at Monaco, making his debut in the Europa League, before joining Championnat National side Quevilly-Rouen in 2018.

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The 25-year-old is predominantly a right-back but can feature in midfield.

L’Equipe claim he will leave his current club with the Blues and Championship rivals City chasing his signature.

Birmingham are just getting started under new manager Aitor Karanka. The Spaniard has good connections across Europe, illustrated during his time at Middlesbrough.

The Blues endured a disappointing campaign last time out. They will need to be smarter under Karanka, while working within the regulations of Financial Fair Play.

Birmingham may see Diarra as an ideal alternative to Maxime Colin.

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Bristol City, on the other hand, are also going through changes this summer after Dan Holden was appointed head coach following the sacking of Lee Johnson.

The Robins haven’t been shy in using the foreign market. Last summer, Han-Noah Massengo joined from Monaco while Adam Nagy and Rodri also arrived from abroad.

Diarra has plenty of pedigree after coming through Monaco’s ranks and City may feel he could be a long-term replacement for Jack Hunt whose contact expires in 2021.

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