Report: Manchester United, Manchester City battle it out for Ezequiel Garay

Benfica's Ezequiel Garay in action against Napoli on August 9, 2013
© Getty Images
Manchester City will join rivals Manchester City in the chase for £17m-rated defender Ezequiel Garay, according to a report.

Manchester United will return for Ezequiel Garay at the end of the season, but are expected to face competition to sign him from rivals Manchester City.

The Premier League champions were pursuing him in the summer, with Garay claiming that he was Old Trafford-bound before newly-appointed Red Devils manager David Moyes pulled out of the deal.

United still hold an interest in the Argentine international, but his refusal to discuss an extension to his Benfica contract, which is due to expire in 2015, until after the World Cup next July, has also alerted City.

According to The Mirror, Citizens manager Manuel Pellegrini has sent scouts to watch the 27-year-old, and they have reported back positively on the £17m-rated centre-back.

Pellegrini is prepared to offload Joleon Lescott, and is apparently looking to bring in another defender to play alongside and provide cover for his injury-plagued skipper Vincent Kompany.

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