Manchester City are no longer in the race to sign Kylian Mbappe, as the closure of the transfer window creeps into sight.
The France international has emerged as the hottest property in world football, after helping Monaco win the Ligue 1 title and impress in the UEFA Champions League last season. Many of the top teams have been linked with the 18-year-old in recent weeks, with a fee in the region of £130million being mooted for his signature.
Real Madrid are considered favourites to sign Mbappe, although Paris Saint Germain are also firmly in the hunt. City have been strongly linked with the forward, but they have now ruled out such a move with director of football Txiki Begiristain confirming: “We are out of the race. It is impossible to do it with the timing remaining.”
Meanwhile, it appears as though City may be having second thoughts about signing Jonny Evans. After seeing an initial £18million bid rejected by West Bromwich Albion for the former Manchester United defender it was widely expected that a second offer would be forthcoming, but the Baggies are yet to receive fresh contact.
Pep Guardiola’s side started the season with a comfortable 2-0 win at Brighton & Hove Albion on the opening weekend of the season, before being held to a 1-1 home draw against Everton. They will look to get back to winning ways this weekend, when they travel to Bournemouth for the early kick-off on Saturday afternoon.
Meanwhile, City have been drawn with Napoli in Group F of the Champions League. The Italians got the better of the Blues in this competition six years ago, but the Manchester club will be confident of progressing through a pool which also includes the champions of Ukraine and Holland in Shakhtar Donetsk and Feyenoord.