Manchester City have launched a £45million bid for Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred, according to reports.
The Brazilian midfielder had been of interest to Manchester United in recent days.
However, City boss Pep Guardiola has moved quickly, with the Manchester Evening News reporting they have tabled an opening offer.
Shakhtar insist it is below their valuation — but the move is a signal of City’s determination to land their man.
Guardiola is keen to bring someone in to ease the workload on Fernandinho, who he described this week as having “played a million minutes”.
While City’s interest in Alexis Sanchez is well known, they are still in the market for a new central midfielder.
Fernandinho is close to signing an extension on his current deal which expires at the end of the season.
But, as he turns 33 in May, Guardiola wants to bring in someone younger.
Jose Mourinho is keen on Fred because the United boss needs a long-term replacement for Michael Carrick.
The former Tottenham man’s calm assurance in the middle of the park has been missed.