Manchester United are close to securing the signing of Barcelona youngster Thiago Alcantara after agreeing terms with the Spanish starlet, according to the Daily Mail.

The Premier League champions will pay the La Liga champions £17m for the 21-year-old as new United boss David Moyes comes close to making his first ever signing as Manchester United manager.

It is thought that Moyes sees Thiago as the long-term replacement of retiring midfielder Paul Scholes and as soon as his pursuit for Cesc Fabregas failed, he turned his attentions straight away to Thiago.

The young midfielder scored a hat-trick in the European U21 Championship final against Italy in which his country won 4-2 and he now looks like he will be on his way to England to finalise his move from the Nou Camp to Old Trafford.

Fierce-rivals Manchester City were also highly interested in Thiago, but they turned their attentions to Malaga's Isco, who is close to signing for them, so United are now just days away from securing Thiago's signature.

It is thought that the deal would see the 21-year-old earn around £5m a year after the player himself and his father agreed to the terms that were offered.

The deal is yet to be finalised between the two clubs, but it is thought the talks will continue over the weekend with an announcement expected to be made next week.

Manchester United will see £17m as a great price for Thiago as in his contract, his release clause is a whopping £77m, but because the midfielder failed to play a certain amount of games for Barcelona last season, the club are set to lose him for much cheaper.


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