Liverpool and Manchester Untied are facing a fight to sign Benfica midfielder Nicolas Gaitan, from mega-rich Russians Anzhi Makhachkala.

A report in Metro claims the big spending Russian Premier League side are hoping to land the Argentina international in the January Transfer window with a £20million bid.

Sir Alex Ferguson was heavily linked with taking Gaitan to Old Trafford in the summer, but the deal never materialised and their interest has, according to the report, been rivalled by Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers.

The Anfield club reportedly made a £14million offer for the 24-year-old in the transfer window, but could not come to an agreement with Benfica.

While Manchester United may have been confident of out-bidding rivals Liverpool to land the talented midfielder, the prospect of going up against Anzhi provides a more formidable challenge.

The club from Dagestan has already shown a willingness to pay astronomical wages – they have made Samuel Eto’o the highest paid player in the world – and Ferguson may struggle to get his man if it comes to a bidding war.

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