By Paul Clennam
Manchester City are considering Swansea boss Michael Laudrup as a potential successor to Roberto Mancini, Goal.com understands.
The reigning Premier League champions sit 12 points adrift of rivals Manchester United in the top flight and saw their Champions League hopes ended at the group stage for a second consecutive season.
And, with Mancini's position expected to come under immediate consideration should City fail to beat Leeds in the FA Cup fifth round on Sunday, Laudrup could be targeted to replace him.
The Dane has led the Swans to ninth place in the Premier League this season and their first-ever domestic cup final appearance - with the south Wales outfit set to take on Bradford in the Capital One Cup showpiece next Sunday.
Those impressive feats, and Laudrup's close relationship with Txiki Begiristain - his former Barcelona team-mate and City's director of football - are believed to have strengthened his chances of being appointed.
With Pep Guardiola having chosen to join Bayern Munich next season, Laudrup is considered as a realistic alternative who shares similar footballing ideals to the Spaniard.
His impressive recruitment strategy, which saw the likes of Michu, Pablo Hernandez and Jonathan de Guzman arrive at the Liberty Stadium last summer, is thought to have also aroused City's interest.