Manchester United & Barcelona target Porto defender

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Manchester United and Barcelona will fight it out for the signature of FC Porto defender Eliaquim Mangala, reports Spanish publication Marca.

Representatives from both clubs were present at Estádio do Dragão to watch the 22-year-old in Primeira Liga action against Marítimo on Sunday, as they weigh up bids before the close of the transfer window next week, according to Portuguese newspaper A Bola.

Red Devils boss David Moyes has been credited with an interest in bringing Mangala to Old Trafford, in a bid to further strengthen his defensive options in 2013/14.

The return of Nemanja Vidic has provided a welcome boost for Manchester United this season, having been able to partner the Serbian alongside fellow veteran Rio Ferdinand, with Jonny Evans, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling in reserve.

Mangala's arrival would be regarded as a signing for the future, even though the France U21 international has established himself as an important member of the Porto first-team, after moving to Portugal from Standard Liege in the summer of 2011.

Barcelona are also on the lookout for a new centre-back, despite manager Gerardo Martino's stance that there is no need to add reinforcements while Carles Puyol is available for selection for the Camp Nou club.

His arrival in Spain would also likely be with the future in mind, after the Catalan captain hangs up his boots at the end of his contract, which expires in June 2016.

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