Manchester United are being linked with a summer move for Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane.

The Daily Express cite reports in Spain when claiming that Sir Alex Ferguson is ready to go head-to-head with Paris Saint-Germain in the race to sign the 19-year-old, who was linked with a move to Old Trafford in the summer of 2011.

Indeed, the Scot was tracking the talented teenager during his time at Lens, according to the report, but failed to lure the Frenchman to the Premier League as he moved to the Santiago Bernabeu.

Varane's stock has risen dramatically in recent weeks, with Jose Mourinho putting faith in the youngster against both Manchester United in the Champions League and Barcelona in the Copa del Rey. 'The Special One' was repaid with two goals in each semi-final leg of El Clasico.

Contracted to Real Madrid until 2017, Varane's long-term deal has done little to stop the speculation, and his addition would be a major coup for the Red Devils if they were able to lure the player away from Spain.

Ferguson has plenty of options in defence, with Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic, Jonny Evans, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling all capable of playing through the middle. Varane would add additional competition to the aforementioned five.

However, the possibility of a move would appear to be a long-shot at this stage, and Manchester United will have to cope with playing against the 15-cap France U21 international in the second leg of their last 16 clash in Europe's premier club competition on Tuesday night as a first priority.

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