Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini is lining up a £22m bid for Real Madrid centre-back Pepe, according to the Daily Star.
It had been reported that City were keen on adding the Portugal international to their ranks earlier this summer, but instead chose to concentrate on adding forwards to their starting eleven. This choice paid off, with Alberto Negredo joining from Sevilla and Stevan Jovetic from Fiorentina.
And following this business, Pellegrini looks set to step up his pursuit of the 30-year-old defender. But despite his interest, a transfer fee is yet to be agreed, with Real Madrid holding out for £30m for their centre-back.
But Manchester City are only willing to pay £22m for Pepe, so negotiations are needed to secure a deal that will see the defender join up with former La Liga manager Pellegrini.
Pellegrini has already used his La Liga knowledge following his appointment, bringing in Negredo from Sevilla. He also missed out on signing Isco from his former club Malaga.
Newly-appointed manager Pellegrini is looking to build a squad full of Champions League experience that will aid his side's progress in the tournament next season. City will also be looking to compete for the Premier League title, having lost it to neighbours Manchester United last season.
And should the Citizens pull of a deal for the veteran Real Madrid defender, this would cast doubt over the future of England centre-back Joleon Lescott. Lescott, who struggled for game time last season, would be pushed further down the pecking order and may seek a transfer if the signing is completed.
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