Transfer News

Manchester City Complete Signing Of Laporte From Athletico

Manchester City have signed French defender Aymeric Laporte from Athletic Bilbao for a club record fee of £57m.

The fee for Laporte, yet to win a cap for France, takes spending by Premier League clubs to £252m this month – a record for a January transfer window.

And the 23-year-old’s arrival takes City’s spending on defenders since the end of last season to £190m.

The club’s previous record fee was the £55m paid to Wolfsburg for Belgium midfielder Kevin de Bruyne in 2015.

The centre-back has played 19 times for France at Under-21 level.

“I am looking forward to working under manager Pep Guardiola and trying to help the club to achieve success,” he told the City website.

“It means a lot that the club have shown faith in me and I am excited to get started.”

Injury concern over skipper Vincent Kompany and uncertainty over the reliability of Eliaquim Mangala led Guardiola to believe he required another central defender in addition to current first choices John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi.

Top-flight clubs smash January record

City’s £57m Laporte capture moved the total spent this window from £195m to a record £252m.

The previous mark of £225m was set in 2011, when Liverpool striker Fernando Torres moved to Chelsea on deadline day.

Chile forward Alexis Sanchez’s move from Arsenal to Manchester United has been the story of the window so far, despite no fee being involved as he made the switch in a straight swap for Armenia playmaker Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

The biggest fee so far is the £75m Liverpool paid to Southampton for Netherlands centre-back Virgil van Dijk – a world record for a defender.

Twelve months ago

In January 2017, a six-year high of £215m was spent by Premier League clubs in 162 completed deals.

For the first time, Premier League clubs recorded a transfer window profit – bringing in £40m more than they paid out.

But the top six clubs spent just £40,000 during the window, all of which came from Cohen Bramall’s switch from Hednesford Town to Arsenal.

While Gabriel Jesus did move to Manchester City that month, he had already signed from Palmeiras in August 2016.

Other big transfers included Morgan Schneiderlin’s move from Manchester United to Everton (£20m) and Wilfred Ndidi transferring from Genk to Leicester City (£15m).

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