Manchester United hope to finally secure the services of Ezequiel Garay when the transfer window reopens in January, and are preparing a £15million bid for the Benfica defender, according to the London Metro.
The 26-year-old Argentine international is understood to be a long-term target for the reigning Premier League champions, having been monitored by the club's scouts for the past couple of years.
Red Devils boss David Moyes is keen to bring Garay to Old Trafford, as he searches for a long-term replacement for veteran centre-back Rio Ferdinand at the heart of the Manchester United defence.
The former Real Madrid defender has made no secret of his desire to one day test himself in England, and might look to force through a move in January, after growing frustrated at Benfica's reluctance to accept United's offer during the summer.
The Portuguese giants will hold out for closer to £20million, due to the fact that a sell-on clause will be owed to Garay's old employers, but Manchester United will hope to reach agreement over a fee between now and the New Year.