Sunday 18 February 2018

Pedro edging closer to €31m Man United switch

Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Manchester United are confident that they will sign Barcelona forward Pedro ahead of the new Premier League season, after talks over a deal for the Spanish star edged closer to a conclusion.

The Pedro transfer has been under discussion for several days and could be concluded swiftly after Old Trafford deal maker Ed Woodward flew back to America to finalise details on the transfer.

While United have yet to make a formal offer that would trigger the £22m (€31m) release clause in Pedro's contract, Barcelona accept that the player is eager to move to Manchester and they are openly admitting they cannot stop him leaving for United.

Woodward is also hopeful of signing off on the transfer of Angel Di Maria to Paris Saint-Germain, although the two clubs still appear to be some way a part in their valuation of the Argentine winger, who has confirmed to his current club that he intends to lead.

Read more: Man United star set for €200k fine after no-show on pre-season tour

While Pedro's arrival would soften the blow of Di Maria's exit, many United supporters have turned to social media in recent days to vent their frustrations over the club record signing's refusal to try and revive his career in England.

Di Maria has yet to make an public comment on why he has decided to leave United so swiftly, with Old Trafford insiders suggesting the club are frustrated by his eagerness to leave a year after his record breaking £59.7m move from Real Madrid.

It remains to be seen whether the deal for Pedro will the last for United in a summer that has already seen them recruit Memphis Depay, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Morgan Schneiderlin, Matteo Darmian and keeper Sergio Romero.

Read more: Man United won't bid for another defender if Sergio Ramos pursuit fails

United sources made it clear on Tuesday that they do not intend to sign another central defender if their concerted moves to sign Real Madrid's Sergio Ramos end unsuccessfully, yet a defensive leader would appear to be a priority for Van Gaal after he also tried and failed to sign Borussia Dortmund's Mats Hummels this summer.

Meanwhile, the stand-off over David De Gea's future continues, with United apparently determined to block his proposed move to Real Madrid unless the current offer on the table from the Spanish giants for the goalkeeper is substantially increased.

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