Exclusive - Manchester City will prioritise the signing of a new striker in 2021 as they prepare to transition away from Sergio Aguero.
The 32-year-old Argentine has proven himself as one of the greatest strikers in Premier League history since joining from Atletico Madrid in 2011, and while there are no doubts about his current ability, there is an awareness that Aguero only has a few years left at the top level.
City know that there are a few positions which need to be strengthened in the near future - finishing 18 points behind Liverpool last season is still fresh in the memory - but sources have confirmed to 90min that a frontman is the Citizens' top priority.
Aguero's short-term future is still unclear. The Argentine's contract expires at the end of the current season, but City still want him to stay for a few more years and they hope to find somebody to come in and ease the burden on Aguero's shoulders going forward.
City do already have Gabriel Jesus on the books. The 23-year-old was viewed as Aguero's long-term successor when he arrived from Palmeiras in 2017, but there are concerns over whether the Brazilian is capable of a role with such responsibility.
Club officials considered selling Jesus last summer and the door remains open to a potential departure in 2021, with City eager to raise money to fund a move for a replacement.
Of the pair, it's Martinez who is seen as the most-likely addition. Barcelona's efforts to sign the 23-year-old in the summer collapsed because of La Blaugrana's poor financial situation, and there is a belief that City may be able to find the kind of money which is not available at Camp Nou right now. Meanwhile, Aguero has been praising his fellow countryman to City's chiefs.
Signing Haaland is still a possibility, but there's an acceptance that there could be too much competition for the Norwegian's signature, and the same can be said of another potential target, Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe.
City are firmly in the race for the 21-year-old's signature, but the general feeling around Europe is that Mbappe is bound for Real Madrid if he does decide to leave Paris next summer.