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Manchester City sign defender Aymeric Laporte from Athletic Bilbao for £57m

Manchester City break record signing for a defender Aymeric Laporte from Athletic Bilbao for £57m.
Laporte, 23, has put pen to paper on a five-and-a-half-year deal to finalise his move to England.

The Premier League leaders triggered his release clause last week which led to Athletic Bilbao pulling Laporte out of their squad to face Eibar on Friday.
Laporte, who will wear the No 14 shirt, said: ‘I am very happy to be here.

‘City are a club with a lot of ambition and they are one of the best teams in Europe.

‘I am looking forward to working under Pep Guardiola and trying to help the club to achieve success.

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

Txiki Begiristain, City’s director of football, added: ‘We are delighted to have signed Aymeric.

‘We have assessed defensive options and he is a player we have admired for a long time.

‘With his quality and ability to play out from the back, we feel Aymeric will fit in perfectly with Pep Guardiola’s playing style.’

Guardiola was keen on adding another centre back to his ranks and Laporte will now compete with Vincent Kompany, John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi.

The French-born defender’s arrival at the Etihad could see Eliaquim Mangala join Newcastle on loan until the end of the season.

MAN CITY’S MOST EXPENSIVE SIGNINGS

Aymeric Laporte – £57m

Kevin De Bruyne – £55m

Benjamin Mendy – £52m

John Stones – £50m

Kyle Walker – £50m

Raheem Sterling – £49m.

Laporte was accompanied by his partner Sara Botello as he left the Radisson Blu in Manchester on Tuesday while wearing a smart roll-neck jumper, jacket and light coloured trousers.

The defender was flanked by hotel staff as he left the building where he has spent the last couple of nights since arriving in England.

He left with Botello, who wore a long grey coat over a leopard-print blouse and leather trouser.

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