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Which Southampton star are Man City prepared to break the bank for?

Manchester City are ready to break the transfer record for a full-back in order to land Southampton starlet Luke Shaw – and could even make their move in the January transfer window rather than wait until the summer.

It is understood that Manchester United and Chelsea also have a long standing interest in Saints’ 18 year-old left back, but reports suggest that Manchester City are ready to steal a march on their rivals by prising the youngster away from St Mary’s this month with a world record fee for a full-back.

Dani Alves, signed by Barcelona from Sevilla for £29.5m in 2008, is currently the most expensive full-back in world football but City look prepared to smash that fee with a bid in excess of £30m for Shaw.

Left-back has been a problem position for City under Manuel Pellegrini, with the Chilean persevering with Aleksandr Kolarov at the moment. But with neither the Serbian nor Gael Clichy fully cementing their place in the starting 11, City want to make their move for the highly rated Shaw.

Shaw is generally regarded as one of the most outstanding English prospects to emerge into the top flight for many years and has made a huge impression for Southampton, flourishing under the guidance of Mauricio Pochettino.

The youth team graduate is seen by many as the long-term successor to Ashley Cole in the England national team.

A move to City would cap a meteoric rise for Shaw, who only made his debut in 2012 and has made just 42 league appearances for Southampton.

Yet despite his inexperience and the fact he insists he is happy to stay at his hometown club, City seem convinced they can get their man.