Manchester City are unlikely to find a buyer for £42million flop Eliaquim Mangala for the third summer running, with the player still recovering from a knee injury sustained in February, The Times reports.
The Blues have struggled to sell the 27-year-old, a big money signing from FC Porto in 2014, due to his high salary and inconsistent performances. A loan spell to Valencia in 2016 went fairly well, but they were unable to finance a permanent deal for him.
City then offered Mangala to other clubs last year, but a £23million deadline day move to Crystal Palace collapsed with the player continuing a habit of rejecting moves away from City, having also snubbed approaches from Spartak Moscow and Stoke in the summer 2017 window.
The centre-back put in some commendable performances for City during the Christmas period last season when they were beset by injuries, which eventually earned him a Premier League winners’ medal. After breaking the club record to sign Aymeric Laporte in January though, Pep Guardiola let Mangala leave on loan for Everton in January.
In his second game at the Merseyside club, Mangala suffered serious knee ligament damage, cutting short his loan spell at Goodison Park, and he continues to recover from that. And that makes any transfer away from the Etihad Stadium difficult ahead of the new season.
It’s possible that Mangala, like last season, could go out on loan in January if he hasn’t recovered in time for the new season. He is out of contract next summer and City may lose their former club-record signing on a free transfer having failed to sell him after several years of trying.