Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur have been dealt a potential blow in their pursuit of Spanish starlet Pedro Obiang.
The 20-year-old central midfielder has been heavily-linked with a move away from Sampdoria, with both Premier League clubs sending scouts to watch the youngster in Serie ‘A’ action this season, according to talkSPORT.
However, director Pasquale Sensibile insists that interested parties will face a battle to land the player, with the Blucerchiati eager to keep hold of their rising star.
"Unless we get an offer he will remain indispensable in Sampdoria. The boy is maturing this season and should grow with us. This is not the time for his departure,” he said, according to the radio station.
Roberto Mancini has been linked with a number of players in the transfer window, with Brazilian starlet Paulinho also on the Manchester City radar.
The Citizens currently sit six-points behind local rivals United in the table, and have already been knocked out of all European competitions after finishing last in their Champions League group.
January could prove to be a pivotal month for Manchester City if they are to enjoy success this season, although Obiang’s potential move to the Etihad Staidum now looks in doubt.
Spurs have also been linked with midfielders, with Joao Moutinho still thought to be on the radar of manager Andre Villas-Boas.
Tottenham Hotspur certainly don’t lack players in the position however, with Scott Parker set to return from injury and challenge Sandro, Moussa Dembele, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Clint Dempsey and Tom Huddlestone for a place in the starting line-up.
Obiang would add yet more competition at White Hart Lane, although a move to Spurs also appears unlikely.
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