Real Betis have admitted for the first time that Benat Etxebarria could join Manchester City - but only if they meet the £17m release clause in his contract.
The midfielder, commonly known as Benat, has been on Roberto Mancini's radar for some time and he tried to sign him last summer.
Betis held firm, though, and managed to rebuff offers from Eastlands but Benat, 25, remains a target.
Mancini was frustrated in his attempts to sign his key targets in the summer but following an underwhelming start to the season, he is expected to plead for more support in the transfer market.
And if Sheikh Mansour grants his wish, Mancini could come in for Spain international Benat.
Real Betis president Rafael Gordillo admits Benat could be off if City cough up, telling AS: "We want Benat to continue with us, but if someone pays the clause we can not do anything."