Man City star and international defender not struggling with £32m transfer fee

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Speaking to L’Equipe, French international Eliaquim Mangala has denied that his hefty £31.8 million transfer fee has made life hard for him at Manchester City

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The defender has, however, admitted that such an outlay has drawn attention to him at the Etihad Stadium.

“It attracts attention, of course,” Mangala began, speaking to L’Equipe via Le 10 Sport, “people focus on the price.

“I don’t think it’s a millstone,” he continued, “but certainly, considering the level of your performance, you are looked at differently.

“I am dealing with it well.”

Mangala moved to the Etihad Stadium in August 2014, signing a five year contract with Manuel Pellegrini’s side.

Despite being accompanied to Manchester with a considerable transfer fee, the defender took his time to adapt to the Premier League.

He scored an own goal and conceded a penalty in a 4-2 victory over Hull City, and was also sent off against Southampton for two yellow cards in November.

Pellegrini, as reported by the Manchester Evening News, admitted that his marquee signing had left himself open to criticism, but backed the Frenchman to come good.

“Maybe you can have some criticisms of Mangala,” the Chilean began, “but he’s improving and he’ll be an important player for this club in the future.”

In a separate interview with the MEN, the former Real Madrid coach also expressed conviction that Mangala would go on to become a vital component of the City squad.

“I think that Mangala is a young player with a lot of experience and I am sure that we have bought the centre-back that we need.”

The centre-back began his senior career with Standard Liege, before moving to Porto in August 2011 alongside his Liege teammate and Belgium international midfielder Steven Defour.

Mangala won the Portuguese title twice with Porto, and the Belgian title once, and to date, he was named in France’s squad for the 2014 World Cup.