Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola could look to sign another centre-back in the January window but might have to sell a foreign player in order to do so.
City have reached their limit on overseas players, which means if they want to sign a foreign defender then a foreign player would need to be sold.
Guardiola had reportedly been looking to offload Argentine defender Nicolas Otamendi in the summer but when the window closed the 31-year-old was still at the Etihad.
According to The Athletic, Guardiola had always planned to start the season with three centre backs but had hoped it would be Aymeric Laporte, John Stones and a new recruit, with Fernandinho as cover.
However, Laporte is currently unavailable after undergoing knee surgery in September and Guardiola has been left with Otamendi and Stones.
After losing 3-1 to Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday, City currently sit fourth in the table and nine points off their title rivals.
City also decided not to find a replacement for Vincent Kompany, who left to be player-manager of Anderlecht at the end of last season, but Guardiola could look to add another defender in the next couple of months.
The Athletic claim the two likely players who could leave to make space would be either Otamendi or Leroy Sane.
The report suggests City could offload Otamendi if they lower their asking price or the club might just cut their losses on Sane.
City want the 23-year-old German winger to commit his future to the club but with 18 months remaining on his current deal the two parties are no closer to reaching a new agreement.
Sane left Schalke in a deal worth £37million back in 2016 and since then has gone on to score 39 goals and create 45 assists in 134 appearances for City in all competitions.
The young winger suffered knee damage in City’s Community Shield victory over Liverpool in August but could return in February.
And with Bayern Munich reportedly showing interest in the player City could look to sell him in January rather than wait and possibly either be in a weaker negotiating position in the summer or even risk losing him on a free transfer further down the line.
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