Man City spent big money on Aymeric Laporte last month, but according to reports he wasn’t Pep Guardiola’s top choice after a bid for Milan Skriniar was rejected. The 22-year-old only joined Inter last summer, but having previously impressed for Sampdoria, the Slovakian international has continued that form at the San Siro to emerge as a key figure for Luciano Spalletti’s side. According to Calciomercato though, it could have been a very short stay had Guardiola had his way, with Man City said to have launched a €65m for Skriniar during the January transfer window. However, such is his importance to the side, that bid was rejected and City went on to splash out £57m on Laporte instead. The Premier League leaders could still choose to revisit their interest in the summer, but they are seemingly settled in that department now. One signing was undoubtedly needed, as with Vincent Kompany’s injury history coupled with Eliaquim Mangala leaving on loan to join Everton, there was a hole to fill in the backline to provide competition and cover for John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi. Laporte now does that, but looking long-term, Guardiola may choose to bring in another defensive star to shore things up almost as a replacement for Kompany moving forward and in the event that Mangala potentially moves on on a permanent basis. Based on how he has adapted to life at the top level with Inter and with so much room for development and many years in his career ahead of him, Skriniar seems to tick a lot of the right boxes for Guardiola.

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