Manchester City insist they will not be held to ransom over Virgil van Dijk.

The Premier League leaders will bid for the Southampton defender in January - but are adamant the fee must be realistic after abandoning their pursuit of the Dutchman in the summer.

They have reignited their interest - but are wary of Southampton placing a January premium on their prize asset.

Pep Guardiola has told City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak a centre back is the priority when the transfer window reopens, with Van Dijk at the top of his wanted list.

But he is concerned he could be priced out of the market, with valuations typically inflated midway through the season.