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SPORTS UPDATE

Man City sign Dortmund defender Akanji for £15m

Manchester City have signed centre-back Manuel Akanji from Borussia Dortmund on a five-year contract.

City agreed a deal worth just over £15m with Dortmund on Wednesday to sign defender Akanji ahead of the transfer deadline.

Swiss international Akanji had entered the final year of his contract and was yet to make an appearance for Dortmund this season. In total, he has played 158 times for the Bundesliga club since joining from Basel in 2018.

The Premier League title holders have struggled with defensive injuries this season, with Aymeric Laporte absent until September as he recovers from knee surgery, while Nathan Ake was taken off during their 3-3 draw at Newcastle on August 21.

City have already signed Erling Haaland, Stefan Ortega, Kalvin Phillips and Sergio Gomez this summer for a combined total of more than £100m.

Akanji moved to Dortmund from Basel in 2018 and quickly established himself as a first-team regular. He made 36 appearances in all competitions last term.

But the 27-year-old has been pushed down the pecking order at Dortmund with the summer arrivals of Niklas Sule from Bayern Munich and Nico Schlotterbeck from Freiburg.

“I am delighted to be here, and can’t wait to get started,” said Akanji, who has taken the number 25 shirt vacated by former City captain Fernandinho this summer.

“City have been one of the best teams in Europe over the last few seasons. They are brilliant to watch, play an exciting brand of football and compete for trophies year in, year out, so coming here feels like the perfect next step in my career.

“Pep Guardiola is an exceptional manager, and this is an exceptional squad of players, so this is an exciting opportunity for me.

“I am really looking forward to testing myself in the Premier League and I will do everything I can to help this club be successful.”

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