Porto's Eliaquim Mangala (R) celebrates his goal against Sevilla with teammate Silvestre Varela during their Europa League quarter-final first leg soccer match at the Dragao stadium in Porto April 3, 2014.
FC Porto's Eliaquim Mangala is a highly talented and robust centre-back. Reuters

Manchester City are reportedly keen to eclipse Manchester United in pursuit of signing FC Porto centre-back Eliaquim Mangala in the summer.

The report by Manchester Evening News states the Etihad outfit will go to any extent possible in order to pip their archrivals. Manuel Pellegrini's side are eyeing some quality additions to the heart of defence.

The former Real Madrid manager currently has four central defenders in his squad with Vincent Kompany, Martin Demichelis, Matija Nastasic and Joleon Lescott.

Demichelis, 33, is not a long-term prospect and enters the final year of his contract in the summer. Nastasic's chances of being a regular in the starting lineup have been hampered due to injuries and the 21-year-old Serbian is currently out since February.

Lescott's contract is due to expire at the end of the season and the England international is not keen on extending his stay due to dearth of first team opportunities.

City were purportedly interested in acquiring Mangala's services during the winter transfer window, but their intentions of making a double swoop for him and his club-mate Fernando Reges failed to materialise.

Reports surfacing earlier this month have stated that City are close to agreeing on a £20m deal to prise away the 23-year-old defender from Portugal. The French international had previously revealed his intentions to play for a big club, thus giving a boost to his potential suitors.

United reportedly have made Mangala their first priority signing. The Red Devils will lose their influential 32-year-old skipper Nemanja Vidic to Inter Milan for free, while veteran defender Rio Ferdinand's contract concludes at the end of the campaign.

Although the 35-year-old former England international has expressed his desire to continue playing football, he does not have many years in his legs.

The outgoing English champions were believed to be giving their recently sacked manager David Moyes £200m to make some significant stellar additions to the squad. The available resources could now be handed over to the Scot's successor.

The club have reportedly agreed to a deal with former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss, Louis van Gaal, with the Dutchman ready to take charge of the club at the end of Netherlands' World Cup campaign in Brazil.