Manchester City have widened their search for a new goalkeeper at the Premier League club, with it believed that scouts from City were in Spain at the weekend to run the rule over Villarreal keeper Diego Lopez.
27-year-old Lopez has been at Villarreal since joining from La Liga giants Real Madrid in 2007 after failing to dislodge Spain and Los Blancos No1 Iker Casillas from between the posts at the Bernabeu.
City have been strongly linked with a move to bring Italian International Gianluigi Buffon from Juventus to the Eastlands Stadium, with a big-money move being mooted for the Azzurri stopper in January. However, Juve have rejected any talk of Buffon leaving La Vecchia Signora, which has led the Premiership club to Lopez.
Lopez, who is regarded as one of the top keepers in La Liga and is valued at around £28million, has also attracted the attention of several other clubs. Although no firm offer has been made for El Submarino Amarillio keeper, who is under contract at the Estadio El Madrigal until 2014.
City scouts were understood to have watched Lopez in the 2-1 defeat to Primera Division leaders Barcelona over the weekend, with it remaining to be seen if Man City will follow up their interest with an offer for the Spaniard when the transfer window reopens in January.