Lucas Paqueta | According to a new report this week, Etihad Stadium officials are ready to end their interest in West Ham midfielder.
Txiki Begiristain and his colleagues in Manchester City’s transfer department focused on Paqueta after it was revealed early in the current season that Kevin De Bruyne had suffered a recurrence of a hamstring injury.
After suffering the same injury in the UEFA Champions League final in Istanbul, the Belgian international was ruled out until early in 2024 after undergoing surgery to prevent further problems.
While Lucas Paqueta had emerged as a serious contender to join Pep Guardiola’s squad, Manchester City quickly retracted their interest, with a deal nearing completion, after it was revealed that the player was the subject of an FA and FIFA investigation into gambling allegations.
With those issues still unresolved, it has been reported that Manchester City may withdraw their interest in the player entirely in the coming weeks and months, despite the belief in some quarters that a move could be on the table in January.
Lucas Paqueta is not a Target to Etihad anymore
According to FootballTransfers’ Steve Kay, the Premier League champions are now ready to drop their interest in West Ham United’s midfielder Lucas Paqueta after an intense pursuit during the recent summer market.
While the Brazil international remains a ‘player of interest’ to Etihad Stadium officials, they want a resolution to the ongoing gambling issues surrounding the player before committing to a deal in the coming months.
In an interesting development, it is further reported that Manchester City are ready to explore other targets more seriously, should there be no resolution to Paqueta’s situation, with Bayern Munich’s Serge Gnabry named as a ‘player of significant interest’.
City then signed Matheus Nunes from Wolverhampton Wanderers at the end of the summer transfer window, after the Portugal international went on strike to force the issue and secure his desire change.
However, the Treble winners’ interest in midfield recruitment has not waned, and whether or not Lucas Paqueta remains a target, they are almost certain to look into spending in the position during the next summer window.
In the near future, Manchester City are stepping up their pursuit of Boca Juniors and Argentina youth international left-back Valentin Barco, who could join the Etihad Stadium during the upcoming winter transfer window.