Madrid tell City to up the bid and Pepe is theirs

Manchester City are set to make a fresh bid for Real Madrid defender Pepe after the Spanish club told new manager Carlo Ancelotti that he must clear out some players to finalise their transfer activity.

City had a £15million bid for the 30 year old defender rejected but sources close to the club have hinted that a bid of £20million will be enough for Madrid to agree to move the player they signed in 2007 from Porto on.

Ancelotti had hoped to retain Pepe’s services but is willing to let him go if it means he can land other transfer targets such as Liverpool’s Luis Suarez while City have maintained an interest in the defender since last summer.

New manager Manuel Pellegrini is keen to get some European experience into his defensive line as he attempts to launch an assault on both the Premier League and Champions League in his first season in charge.

Pellegrini and technical director Txiki Begiristain have also decided to give Joleon Lescott a one year contract extension ending rumours that he along with Gareth Barry would be available for a cut price this summer as the Blues look to clear out the older members of their squad.

The former Malaga and Real Madrid manager made a point of telling Lecsott that he would reject any bids for him as he sees the 30 year old as an important part of his squad this year, though he said he was happy to keep 32 year old Barry as a member of the team he would not stand in his way should an offer be made.

Begiristain is currently in Spain finalising a deal for Sevilla striker Alvaro Negredo believed to be worth close to £25million including add-ons.

The deal had thought to have petered out with Sevilla president Jose Maria Del Nido publically bemoaning City’s slow negotiations process but it is thought now that the player will announce his transfer in the coming days.

The Premier League runners up are also in late stage negotiations with Fiorentina over the sale of Montenegrin striker Steven Jovetic in a deal worth £23.3million.

The 23 year old’s agent has travelled to Manchester to discuss personal terms worth in the region of £80,000 a week with City and the player has already undergone medical tests in Florence so as to expedite the transfer.

Fiorentina are happy to sell their prize asset after securing the services of Bayern Munich’s Mario Gomez who was unveiled in front of 20,000 fans earlier this week.

Aaron hails from Dublin, and follows the Premiership religiously. A Tottenham Hotspur supporter.