Monday 26 February 2018

Manchester United transfer news: Barcelona step up bid for Angel di Maria

Spanish club eye up Old Trafford star

Manchester United's Angel di Maria
Manchester United's Angel di Maria

Barcelona have made an enquiry about signing Manchester United's Angel di Maria.

According to Catalan newspaper Sport, the two clubs aren't deep into negotiations yet and suggest that initial talks have been made with the player and his represenatives.

Di Maria has been unable to settle in Manchester since his big-money move from Real Madrid last summer and is said to be willing to move on.

United manager Louis van Gaal is open to bids for the Argentine and use the money from the sale to boost his squad this summer.

Barcelona are currently in the middle of a transfer ban but it does allow them to still sign players, but they would not be able to play until January at the earliest. They can also go out on loan.

Barca are hoping to use the close friendship that Lionel Messi has with his compatriot to lure Di Maria back to La Liga.

Manchester United have delivered Real Madrid an ultimatum - include Sergio Ramos in any deal for David de Gea or the move won't happen.

Real value defender Ramos at £40m and want De Gea plus £20m from United.

However, the Star says that Old Trafford chief executive Ed Woodward knows how desperate the Spanish giants are to sign De Gea and will stand their ground in negotiations.

Read more: Manchester United boost as transfer target admits: I want to play in Premier League

De Gea has 12 months left to run on his current deal and would be a free agent next summer and United are ready to play hard ball and prepared to make the Spaniard see out his remaining deal if Real refuse to meet their demands.

The Star goes on to say that Woodward will tell Real that a straight swap is what they want.

Ramos has grown frustrated by a contract dispute at the Bernabeu which has opened the door for a move away.

Barcelona have shown an interest, but Real are unwilling to sell to their arch rivals.

Ramos is unhappy that he has been able to run into the final two years of his current deal without holding talks and, according to the Star, United first enquired about a move for the Spaniard back in April.

The defender has been taking English lessons and made it clear that Louis van Gaal's side will be his top choice should he opt to leave Real.

United are said to be willing to meet his huge wage demands of £200,000-a-week which would make him the highest paid defender in the Premier League.

United are said to be lining up an £18m bid for Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, according to French paper L'Equipe.

Lloris is said to have a verbal agreement in place with Daniel Levy that he could be sold if an offer of over £17.8m came in for him.

Tottenham, though, will offer Lloris and Harry Kane captaincy roles to ward off United's interest.

Our report in the Telegraph says manager Mauricio Pochettino plans to reaffirm the club's determination to hold on to the pair by offering them fresh roles.

Goalkeeper Lloris is in line to be given the full captaincy, while Kane is poised to be made vice-captain with the promise of taking the armband full-time if and when the Frenchman leaves White Hart Lane.

United are interested in both Lloris and Kane, but Spurs chairman Daniel Levy has promised head coach Pochettino that he has no intention of selling either player this summer.

Read more: Manchester United boost as transfer target admits: I want to play in Premier League

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