Manchester United appear to face competition from local rivals Manchester City for the signing of Jamaal Lascelles.
According to The Sun, the Citizens are targeting the £6 million-rated Nottingham Forest defender, with scouts supposedly viewing him as an ideal defensive replacement for outcast Joleon Lescott.
England international Lescott, who recently deputised for the suspended Martin Demichelis in the Champions League defeat to Barcelona at the Nou Camp, has struggled to hold down a starting berth under Manuel Pellegrini and is widely expected to leave the Etihad Stadium when his contract expires during the summer.
20-year-old Lascelles joined Championship promotion hopefuls Forest as a youngster and has suitably impressed in English football's second-tier, making 22 appearances in Billy Davies' backline at the City Ground so far this season.
Clearly impressed by his mature and dominant displays, Manchester United - who have struggled immensely for any sort of form or stability under the leadership of David Moyes since he took over from Sir Alex Ferguson last summer - have reportedly been scouting Lascelles ahead of a a summer move for his services.
Both Manchester United and Manchester City evidently have an urgent need for a new centre-back.
With the former having looked worryingly inept at the back on multiple occasions so far this season, the defensive stability at Old Trafford is set to weakened even further by Nemanja Vidic's defection to Serie A giants Inter Milan at the end of the season.
Manchester City, meanwhile, are expected to lose Lescott while the aforementioned Demichelis has been nothing short of woeful at times since arriving in the top-flight last summer.
It is abundantly clear, therefore, that Pellegrini needs to find a suitable partner for captain Vincent Kompany during the next transfer window.
While Lascelles has been excellent for Forest of late, it could be argued that both Manchester sides may require a touch more experience at the back moving forward.
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