Presumably, Real Madrid thought offering €180 million for Kylian Mbappe would all but guarantee them the signature of the Monaco teenager for next season.
The figure, reported by Marca on Tuesday, would smash the world transfer record of €105 million established by Man Utd's purchase of Paul Pogba from Juventus last summer.
However, according to the Manchester Evening News, Man City hope to throw a spanner into the Real Madrid works. Pep Guardiola's side have reportedly opened negotiations with the Ligue 1 team and are apparently prepared to offer Monaco €160 million for the 18-year-old.
Man City hope their offer, €20 million less than Real Madrid's, will be preferable to the Spanish side's as it can be paid right now. Real's offer may require the sale of further players to fund the move. The Premier League team's money is on the table right now.
French paper L'Equipe report that the numbers involved may actually be higher than initially thought. They say Madrid's offer is €180 million plus €20 million in add-ons and that City's offer is actually €180 million.
If Man City do acquire Mbappe, it would be their third signing of the summer from Monaco. Already, they have brought in Portuguese midfielder Bernardo Silva and French left-back Benjamin Mendy from the Champions League semi-finalists.