Aymeric might move to City.

English club, Manchester City are close to signing Athletic Bilbao defender Aymeric Laporte.

City are thought to be happy to match the defender’s £57m release clause, which would break the club’s transfer record of £55m that they paid for Kevin De Bruyne in 2015.

Sky Sports News reported earlier this week discussions had begun between the clubs over a deal for the 23 year-old.

The club expects Aymeric Laporte to develop into one of the Premier League’s best defenders if his move to Manchester City goes through

Laporte, who has made 19 appearances for Athletic this season, was left out of their squad to face Eibar on Friday.

Pep Guardiola refused to give anything away when asked about their pursuit of Laporte, but it appears they have now persuaded the Spanish club to part company with the highly-rated Frenchman.

Asked whether Laporte was a player of interest, Guardiola said: “There were players in the past who we were interested in and we will be in the present and the future.

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola remains coy over moves for Athletic Bilbao defender Aymeric Laporte and Shakhtar Donetsk’s Fred

“I always try to do the best for the club; knowing the players that we have and knowing the players that can improve our squad.”

Laporte previously turned down a move to the Etihad in October 2016 but the Premier League leaders have always remained interested.