Man City move first in transfer race for highly-rated Croatian defender
Man City make first move in race to sign highly-rated Croatian defender
Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Man City make first move in race to sign highly-rated Croatian defender

Manchester City are the first team to have made an offer for one of the most exciting young talents in world football, according to reports.

On the pitch City are currently busy fighting to win the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup, but off it they are already looking ahead to the future.

City are well known for planning ahead; it’s part of the reason why the Blues have managed to avoid the kind of ‘down years’ that Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester United have experienced in recent times.

That approach extends to transfer business, as City like to get their dealings done early rather than having to scrabble around on deadline day.

Jude Bellingham is understood to be at the top of Pep Guardiola’s transfer wishlist, but the 19-year-old isn’t the subject of a reported City offer.

According to David Ornstein, City have made a €12million (£10.5m) offer for 16-year-old Croatian centre-back Luka Vuskovic.

The deal comprises an initial fee of €10m plus a further €2m in potential add-ons. A number of top European sides are fighting to sign Vuskovic, but City are the first to submit a formal offer to Hajduk Split.

Photo by Lexy Ilsley – Manchester City/Manchester City FC via Getty Images

Vuskovic made his full senior debut last month against arch-rivals Dinamo Zagreb, a sign of the trust those at the club have in him. Hajduk have neither accepted nor rejected the offer.

With a bright future ahead of him, the youngster has partnered with agent Pini Zahavi. Last year Zahavi was banned from acting as a player intermediary for two months by the Football Association over a false declaration.

Central defence might not be an area many City fans had earmarked for reinforcement, but recent reports linking Aymeric Laporte with a move could make signing Vuskovic smart business.

City are also likely to bring in recruits in other areas of the squad.

It feels like City are permanently in need of a new left-back, and the January departure of Joao Cancelo has made the need even more pressing.

A different profile of winger to Jack Grealish and Riyad Mahrez could also be on the cards, so to give Guardiola more options and maybe allow Phil Foden more minutes in midfield.

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