Manchester City could beat Manchester United to the summer signing of Jack Grealish from Aston Villa if they are unable to land a new striker ahead of next season, according to reports. The newly-crowned Premier League champions are looking to fill the boots of Sergio Aguero with the addition of a top-class marksman, with Harry Kane said to be high on the club’s list of prospective targets.
Borussia Dortmund talisman Erling Haaland has also been mentioned in connection with an impending move to City, but it seems as though Tottenham‘s wantaway striker could be their most likely option.
Kane recently told Spurs chairman Daniel Levy that he wants to leave the club this summer after failing to win a single trophy since making his first-team debut ten years ago.
United and Chelsea have both been heavily linked with moves for the 27-year-old but City appear to be the strongest contenders for his signature.
Meanwhile, the Red Devils have also been credited with an interest in Grealish, who is currently gearing up to represent England at Euro 2020.
The Villa skipper has been tipped to seek a move away from the west Midlands after establishing himself as one of the Premier League’s best attacking players.
His current employers pipped Arsenal to the signing of Norwich City playmaker Emiliano Buendia earlier this week, suggesting that Grealish could be expected to leave the club ahead of the new campaign.
Despite United’s interest, their pursuit of the 25-year-old could depend on whether their cross-city rivals manage to tempt Spurs into parting ways with Kane, according to The Athletic.
It is claimed that Grealish would like to play Champions League football, with the Red Devils keeping communications open as they weigh up an approach for his services.
However, both Guardiola and City director Txiki Begiristain are also said to be keen admirers of the Villa man and could look to act if they fail to land a new striker.
If City are successful in poaching Kane or even Haaland, it is believed that a move for Grealish would be unlikely, unless one of their existing stars is sold to free up additional funds.
This could give United a free run at the versatile attacker if they eventually decide to step up their pursuit with a formal bid.
The report also claims that Villa may hold out for a fee in the region of £100million, with Grealish playing a hugely influential role in the club’s progression since returning to the Premier League in 2019.
It remains to be seen whether the 20-time champions would be prepared to match this figure, with a number of other additions said to be on their agenda this summer.
Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho has reportedly agreed personal terms with United but the Red Devils will be forced to pay £82million in order to finalise the move, according to transfer expert Fabrizio Romano.
Meanwhile, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is said to be keen on signing a new centre-back to partner Harry Maguire next season.
The likes of Villarreal defender Pau Torres, Sevilla’s Jules Kounde and Raphael Varane of Real Madrid have all been linked with the Old Trafford club in recent months.