Manchester City's targets for the centre-back position have been narrowed to a shortlist of five key names, any of which could join the club this summer. The list, from the Evening Standard, includes talent from the top leagues in Portugal, Spain, Italy and England.
City's primary top target for some time has been the Senegalese captain Kalidou Koulibaly, who has been with Serie A side Napoli since 2014. The 29-year-old has also been connected with Liverpool and Manchester United by the media.
Another name heavily linked with City is Nathan Ake, who is perhaps destined to leave Bournemouth after their relegation from the Premier League was confirmed last weekend. The Dutch international, who can also play at left-back, has "no relegation clause", according to the Telegraph, so could leave the Cherries for a discounted price.
City have been linked with a centre-back due to their concerns this season defensively, having conceded needless goals and having lost nine games this season. With that being said, Ederson did secure the Premier League's Golden Glove award for most clean sheets in a single season, a feat which shouldn't go unnoticed.
Pau Torres is the next name on the list - the Villareal defender has made just one appearance for the Spanish national team, but is only 23 years of age. The young Spaniard missed only four games for his club this season, through one injury and one suspension. For every game in which he was fit and available, he played the entire 90 minutes.
Ruben Dias, another option for Guardiola, shares this accomplishment with Torres. He missed one game for Benfica due to a suspension and played 90 minutes in all other games in the league season. The 23-year-old led Benfica to second place in the Portuguese first division, and may yet help to secure the Portuguese cup trophy with the final to be played this weekend.
Jan Vertonghen is the last name on City's shortlist. The Belgian international is currently a free agent after he left Tottenham this summer. Vertonghen has been touted for a move to multiple top Premier League clubs and can also play at left-back, but he did turn 33 in April.
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