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Gossip: Trio of big names linked

With just three days until Manchester City jet out on the pre-season tour of the US, the transfer rumour mill is intensifying...

Familiar defensive names feature, plus there's a word on a young City striker making waves in Europe..

But first to one of the most highly rated players in the game, Monaco forward Kylian Mbappe, who has again been linked with City, this time by journalist Graham Hunter.

"Real Madrid, meanwhile, are wooing Mbappe's agents saying they will break the transfer record for this kid. Zidane, of course, has known Mbappe since he was 14," Hunter told Sky Sports.

"The battle is with Manchester City and they are persuasive and Mbappe is now thinking long and hard between London, Madrid, Paris and now Manchester. City are in that battle.

"At the moment it's hard to see him choosing Monaco over one of those, but none of clubs know who is favourite to sign this exceptional 18-year-old."

A number of news outlets have reported that City are closing on a move for Tottenham defender Kyle Walker, while another defender features - not for the first time - across the papers and pixels.

A report on Sporting Life reads: "City are also said to have been tracking Monaco left-sided defender Benjamin Mendy.

"The France international, who helped Monaco win Ligue 1 last season and reach the semi-finals of the Champions League, is reported to be valued at around £40million."

Watch Sane's amazing banana shot from training below!

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Away from the transfer window, the Manchester Evening News carries a piece on young City forward Lukas Nmecha.

Simon Bajkowski reported: "Lukas Nmecha was a relieved man after his last-minute goal helped England into the final of the Under-19 European Championships.

"The Manchester City teenager came on as a substitute against the Czech Republic and missed a brilliant chance set up by club teammate Isaac Buckley-Ricketts as the game approached injury time.

"But he improvised moments later with a clever backheel to send the Young Lions through to a final with Portugal.

"'I took my chance when I got it, the second one,” he said.

"'It was just a relief, I tried to forget about it [the first chance] as quickly as I could and I could feel a chance coming.

"'Everyone was encouraging me, saying we'd get another chance, which we did and I took it! I've never scored in the 90th minute before, so it's probably the most important goal I've scored.'"

Watch this space...