Manchester City are reportedly trying to conclude a deal for Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred.
Pep Guardiola has been linked with a move for the Brazilian in recent months but City were said to be willing to wait until the summer.
The recruitment of a defensive midfielder is not seen as a priority this month but City are keen to source a stand-in for Fernandinho in time for the start of the summer and they are wary that Fred’s valuation has risen significantly since they first registered an interest.
The 24-year-old could cost £40million but, according to The Telegraph, City are looking to reach an agreement swiftly to ensure interest from Man Utd and Chelsea is not allowed to scupper their plans.
Fred has lined up against City twice this season, and the Brazil international revealed that he had been approached by Guardiola after one of their Champions League clashes.
“A friend gave me the news saying that City and Guardiola were interested in me,” he reportedly told Gazzetta dello Sport. “At the exit of the locker room, he stopped me and said we had a good game. But he did not ask me to play with him.
“However, I confess, I wait impatiently for his call to arrive now. I think I would grow a lot with him. England is the best league in the world and I’ve always dreamed of playing there.”
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