Sao Paulo, Dec 23 (IANS) English football league champions Manchester City have sent the director of their club Txiki Begiristain to negotiate the transfer of Corinthians and Brazil midfielder Paulinho.
It is reported that City will offer in the region of $18 million for the deep-lying playmaker, who was instrumental in Corinthians' 2012 Libertadores success and their win against European champions Chelsea last weekend in the Club World Cup, reports Xinhua.
With Yaya Toure set to miss January playing in the African Cup of Nations, the Manchetser club are under pressure to bring in a big name, with the Brazilian considered an ideal fit.
Paulinho is not the only Brazil international currently on the English outfit's radar. While in Sao Paulo, it is believed Begiristain will take the opportunity to discuss with Santos a possible bid for 20-year-old sensation Neymar.
Whilst the striker has repeatedly confirmed his happiness at the Brazilian club, and his desire to stay with Santos until the 2014 World Cup at the very least, a huge offer from Manchester City's Abu Dhabi owners may tempt Neymar to move earlier than he had previously planned.
A host of clubs are interested in signing the prodigy, including Chelsea, Barcelona and Real Madrid.
As of yet, however, no figures have been discussed concerning a possible move for Neymar.