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Man City to renew Paqueta transfer pursuit ‘if FA betting investigation is dropped’

Manchester City will return to West Ham United for Lucas Paqueta this summer if the Football Association (FA) drops their investigation into his involvement in a betting scandal, according to the Guardian.

The Brazilian attacker was close to joining the Premier League champions last summer before the FA opened an enquiry into suspicious yellow cards he received, which a handful of people in his home country predicted.

The FA has not disclosed much about the investigation despite claiming a resolution is in sight, and City are awaiting updates before deciding whether to push for Paqueta.

City submitted a £59.8 million (€70m) for him last summer, which West Ham rejected before the investigation came up and scuppered a potential transfer.

Paqueta’s contract has a £85m release clause, which becomes active in June, and the player is keen a move away from the club after two years. 

The 26-year-old has had a brilliant two years and is now ready to take a step up the career ladder, with City waiting with open arms to receive him if the betting investigation is dropped.

West Ham stand to make a healthy profit from the sale, which they would reinvest in the squad.

The Hammers have a strong first team but need equally solid options off the bench, as they found out against Bayer Leverkusen in the Europa League yesterday.

Jarrod Bowen and Edson Alvarez were absent, and West Ham looked toothless against the Bundesliga table-toppers. They need funds to reinvest in stronger options off the bench.

As for City, they are preparing for the possible departure of Kevin De Bruyne, who has attracted interest from the Saudi Pro League.

Bernardo Silva could also leave the Etihad Stadium, with Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain keen on his signature.

Paqueta’s move would be a win-win for all parties involved, but this transfer might not materialise with this investigation cloud hanging over his head unresolved.

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