Manchester United are set to miss out on signing Fabio Coentrao, as Real Madrid look set to swoop for the defender, report the Sun.

The left-sided Benfica man has attracted attention across Europe, with Chelsea also interested.

But with United formerly favourites to land the 23-year-old, it seems that Madrid have beaten them to it.

Coentrao, 23, said: "I know that Manchester United and Barcelona are interested in me.

"This is special for me and makes me think that I am doing well as a player.


"They are two big teams with the best players but if Real Madrid show an interest they will be my first option.

"There is a mutual interest between me and Real Madrid. However, it is up to the clubs to reach an agreement over a transfer fee.

"I can only hope that my dream of playing for Real Madrid will become reality."

Coentrao is rated at £26 million, and would help fill a Madrid defence which has struggled to match the standards of Barcelona's faultless back-line.

Meanwhile, United are looking to strengthen their defence after being tormented by Barcelona in the Champions League final.


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