Manchester United are in danger of being beaten to Valencia star Nicolas Otamendi by Manchester City, reports the Daily Mirror, with the Spanish side eyeing Eliaquim Mangala as compensation for the Argentine international.
The France international has failed to make an impact with the club since signing for £32 million [BBC] last summer, but could still be a good option for Los Che if he can rediscover the form showed at Porto.
Otamendi has a release clause of £35.5 million according to Deporte Valenciano [via Metro], but the Sky Blues could look to lower that by adding Mangala to the deal. This would be bad news for the Red Devils, who have been looking at the defender as an alternative to Real Madrid ace Sergio Ramos [Daily Express].
It’s hard to imagine who United, by contrast, could offer Valencia as ‘compensation’ for Otamendi.
Louis van Gaal is in need of a new centre-back at Old Trafford, after having to rely on the brilliant form of David De Gea last time round. Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, and Jonny Evans all looked error-prone during the campaign, and the back line seems desperate for a leader in the mould of Otamendi.
Having helped Valencia to concede just 32 goals in La Liga last season, the Argentine could be the ideal man for the job.
However, if City do sign the former Porto man, their city rivals will need to look elsewhere. Everton ace John Stones is another centre-back they have been linked to [ESPN], and could be a good option for United.