Saturday 16 December 2017

Manchester United await verdict on Alvaro Morata after fresh talks in Spain

Alvaro Morata of Real Madrid celebrates after scoring goal during the La Liga match between RC Deportivo La Coruna and Real Madrid at Riazor Stadium on April 26, 2017 in La Coruna, Spain. (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)
Alvaro Morata of Real Madrid celebrates after scoring goal during the La Liga match between RC Deportivo La Coruna and Real Madrid at Riazor Stadium on April 26, 2017 in La Coruna, Spain. (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Alvaro Morata’s agent and father staged a meeting with Real Madrid chiefs on Monday, as a decision over the future of the Spanish striker appears to be closer.

Agent Juanma Lopez and father Alfonso Morata staged a meeting with Real Madrid officials that lasted for around 50 minutes, with the outcome of those talks yet to become clear.

Manchester United have been heavily linked with a move for Morata in recent weeks, but the two clubs have failed to agree a transfer fee for the player and Real Madrid president Florentino Perez also confirmed that no deal is in place for the move to be concluded.

United had been hoping to have confirmed Morata’s arrival before manager Jose Mourinho's return to the club Carrington training base after his summer break, which may be extended as he continues to mourn the loss of his beloved father Felix.

Yet that the rush of signings Mourinho has been hoping to see completed by the start of July have not materialised, with the Morata deal the latest that appears to be on hold.

There have been a series of reports suggesting Mourinho is frustrated with the lack of progress in acquiring his transfer targets this summer, with the signing of Benfica defender Victor Lindelof the only successfully concluded deal so far.

Striker Antoine Griezmann opted to turn down a move to United in favour of staying at Atletico Madrid, winger Ivan Perisic looks set to remain at Inter Milan after Old Trafford chiefs refused to pay his €50m asking price, while attempts to sign Tottenham’s Eric Dier have also come to nothing.

Now their pursuit of Morata needs to be resolved, with the players seemingly keen to make the move to Manchester as he seeks more regular first team football.

Yet there have been suggestions that he could be persuaded to stay in Spain, with some unconfirmed reports claiming Real Madrid may offer him a new contract in a bid to convince him to stay.

A bid in excess of €70m would be needed to convince Real Madrid to sell Morata, with United seemingly waiting for the final decision to be made on their latest top transfer target.

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