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Manchester United, Manchester City to battle for Alessandro Bastoni?

Manchester United, Manchester City to battle for Alessandro Bastoni?

Manchester United and Manchester City are reportedly set to go head-to-head for the signature of Inter Milan centre-back Alessandro Bastoni.

The 23-year-old originally arrived at San Siro as a teenager from Atalanta BC in 2017 has become an integral part of the Nerazzurri’s defence over the past couple of years.

Bastoni made 33 Serie A appearances in the 2020-21 season under Antonio Conte as Inter got their hands on the Scudetto, and he contributed one goal and three assists in 31 league outings last term.

Speculation was rife surrounding the Italy international’s future in the summer, as he was strongly tipped to reunite with former Inter boss Antonio Conte at Tottenham Hotspur.

Bastoni’s agent Tullio Tinti ruled out any departure for his client ahead of the 2022-23 season, though, telling reporters: “Bastoni will certainly remain at Inter.

Antonio Conte in charge of Tottenham Hotspur on September 13, 2022© Reuters

“He has a contract with Inter, he is happy to play at Inter and there’s no problem I respect contracts. If they call me, there’s no problem.”

The 6ft 3in centre-back is currently due to become a free agent in 2024, though, so Inter may be pressured into a sale next year if he does not agree fresh terms.

According to Gazzetta dello Sport, both Man United and Man City are preparing to test Inter’s resolve in 2023, while Tottenham are still in the background as well.

The report adds that interested parties can expect to be quoted as much as £50m for Bastoni, in spite of his current contract ending in under two years’ time.

Bastoni has come up with three goals and nine assists in 126 appearances for Simone Inzaghi‘s side in all tournaments over the last five years, during which time he was also loaned out to Atalanta and Parma.

Alessandro Bastoni in action for Italy in June 2022© Reuters

During that time, the defender has won Serie A, the Coppa Italia and the Supercoppa Italiana with Inter Milan, as well as forming a part of Italy’s Euro 2020-winning squad.

Bastoni was not the only Inter centre-back to be linked with a move away in the summer, as soon-to-be free agent Milan Skriniar was courted by Paris Saint-Germain, but Inter’s asking price put the Ligue 1 champions off.

Both Man United and Man City added to their centre-back ranks in the summer window, with the Red Devils managing to beat Arsenal to the signature of Lisandro Martinez from Ajax.

The Argentina international initially struggled to adapt to life in the Premier League, but he has since demoted Harry Maguire to the bench after forming an effective partnership with Raphael Varane.

Meanwhile, City struck a deal for Manuel Akanji during Aymeric Laporte‘s layoff with a knee injury, and the Switzerland international has already started three games for the Premier League champions.

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