Manchester City have turned their attention back to Atletico Madrid defender Jose Gimenez with an offer that could reach €94m, according to reports.
Despite already bringing in Nathan Ake from Bournemouth, City are still looking for another reinforcement at centre-back.
Their main target throughout the summer has been Kalidou Koulibaly. However, it has proven difficult to negotiate with Napoli – and time is now running out to sign him after the Serie A club set a deadline.
Therefore, it appears City are focusing on different targets. And Jose Gimenez seems to be their plan B.
News of City’s interest in Gimenez emerged back in July, when Chelsea were also fighting for the player. The 25-year-old has been impressive for Atletico since joining in 2013, so would be expensive – but has all the desirable experience.
City reportedly had a bid rejected for the player earlier this month. However, with their pursuit of Koulibaly getting no easier, they are now ready to return for Gimenez.
According to AS, City have launched a new offer for Gimenez, worth an initial €89m. The ‘formal offer’ also includes add-ons, which could increase the total outlay to €94m.
Atletico could consider sale
The new offer is worth around €20m more than the last bid City apparently submitted for the centre-back.
Until now, Atletico have been refusing to let the Uruguayan leave for less than his €120m release clause. However, given the current financial climate, City’s latest bid could tempt them.
Gimenez is four years younger than Koulibaly, so represents a longer-term investment. And while the player is ‘comfortable’ at Atletico, he could listen to City’s offer.
Last week, reports in Spain claimed Manchester United had also made an approach for Gimenez. The Red Devils were already battling their rivals for Koulibaly, and it appears both clubs have had the same ideas in terms of alternatives.
Now, Atletico boss Diego Simeone is set for talks with Gimenez to persuade him to stay. Last season, the defender played fewer games than any season since his first at the club – but Simeone restored him towards the end of the campaign.