Manchester City are aiming to gazump Bayern Munich in their move for Athletic Bilbao and Spain midfielder Javi Martinez, the
Martinez, who can also play in defence, had appeared to be on the verge of a move to the Bundesliga for a fee of around £30m. But the transfer has stalled, possibly giving Roberto Mancini an opening in which to bring the 23-year-old to the Etihad Stadium.
Mancini had first targeted Roma’s Italy international Daniele De Rossi, who, like Martinez can play in defence or midfield, but De Rossi announced this week he was intent on remaining in the Italian capital.
Martinez’s versatility is part of what has attracted Mancini as he seeks to increase his options in defence and midfield following the signing of Jack Rodwell from Everton. Mancini has also wanted a more orthodox centre-back in Liverpool’s Daniel Agger, but the Dane appears set to remain on Merseyside.
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