Manchester City are hoping to sign Porto pair of Fernando and Elaquim Mangala, but they may have to wait until the summer transfer window.
The Premier League leaders are interested in the Brazilian midfielder and the French defender and have scouted both players.
But a City source told ESPN FC that January is likely to end without manager Manuel Pellegrini having strengthened his squad.
Centre-back Mangala, who was first linked with City last summer, is also a reported target of both Chelsea and Manchester United but Porto are thought to be reluctant to reduce their 38 million pound asking price.
Midfielder Fernando, 26, is out of contract in the summer and is more likely to join Manchester United, ESPN FC revealed on Wednesday.
City have not brought anyone in during the January transfer window and manager Pellegrini has regularly declared that he has “no news” to tell.
But they are expected to look for another central defender in the summer, when Joleon Lescott’s contract at the Etihad Stadium expires.
And with Jack Rodwell suffering from a series of injuries and rarely being used, Javi Garcia is the only specialist central midfielder to offer cover for the first-choice pair of Yaya Toure and Fernandinho.