The Argentine defender has been impressive for the Lisbon giants of late, alerting a number of clubs from across Europe.
United are thought to be leading the race for the 27-year-old’s signature, and came close to agreeing a deal for his signature over the summer.
Despite opting against pushing through an agreement during the last window, David Moyes is thought to be ready to return for Garay in January, but will now face competition from City.
Manuel Pellegrini is thought to be keen to draft in a new centre-back, with Joleon Lescott – a target for Stoke – set to leave the Etihad Stadium.
The Chilean is said to have scouts watching Garay of late, and has been impressed by the reports he has received.
As a result, he is now ready to push ahead with a move for the £17m-rated South American.
Garay has put off contract talks with Benfica of late, insisting that he wants to keep his options open heading into the World Cup.
But, he could be tempted by City or United, who would boost his chances of making Argentina’s squad for the showpiece tournament next year.
Manchester United or Manchester City? Which would be the best move for Ezequiel Garay?
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