Manchester City close to giving up on Jonny Evans and will move for £20m alternative – report

Manchester City are on the brink of calling off a move for West Brom skipper Jonny Evans and instead making a £20million bid for Middlesbrough’s Ben Gibson, Jack Pitt-Brooke of The Independent claims.

Pep Guardiola wants an English-trained centre-back and while Evans has been his first choice, West Brom are demanding more than £30million for the 29-year-old, a price City deem excessive.

And Gibson, who was relegated with Middlesbrough to the Championship next season, would be available at a lower price with his club in a much weaker bargaining position, given their status and the player’s hope of returning to the Premier League.

Chelsea have a long-standing interest in 24-year-old Gibson, but unless West Brom’s stance on Evans changes quickly, it will be City who are the first big club to bid for him.

A return to the top flight could also boost Gibson’s hopes of making England’s World Cup squad, with Gareth Southgate having called him up in March this year.

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