Manchester City have reportedly made initial contact with Sporting Lisbon over the prospect of financing a deal for Argentine starlet Thiago Almada.
The Premier League champions are said to have been following the 18-year-old, dubbed the 'new Messi', for some time now.
Sporting are reportedly working with the Manchester club to conclude a deal which would release Almada from Velez Sarsfield, the Argentine side for whom he made his senior debut last year.
According to O Jogo, the Citizens are working on a 'future option' clause for Almada, which would mean he joins Sporting on a permanent deal and Pep Guardiola's side get priority over signing him later on should the youngster succeed in Europe.
The two clubs are preparing a bid of €12m (£10.7m) for Almada, with City set to fund part of the deal.
However, the midfielder is on the verge of signing a new contract with Velez, which would increase his release clause to €25m (£22.4m).