Manchester United a preparing to go head-to-head with Real Madrid and Premier League rivals Liverpool for World Cup sensation James Rodriguez, reports the Daily Express.
The 22-year-old is one of the hottest properties in world football after he took home to Golden Boot from Brazil, scoring six goals and assisting two. His club Monaco are keen to keep him but have put a £70 million price tag on his head.
However, The Daily Express report that Monaco are now willing to accept £63 million for Rodriguez. fresh from their £750 million adidas deal, Manchester United are ready to match it.
Real Madrid preference
The player himself has already revealed his desire to play for Real Madrid in the near future and Spanish newspaper AS claim a verbal agreement between Bernabeu officials and the player has already been reached. Los Blancos are yet to agree a fee with Monaco so a deal is still someway off.
That gives Louis van Gaal and Brendan Rodgers the chance to swoop in but, as previously mentioned, if given the choice, it is clear Rodriguez would choose the European champions.
He told Spanish newspaper Marca: "It's really flattering to know that a club like Madrid, of such magnitude, are interested in me. It would be a dream to sign for the team of my dreams.
"I have a great deal of respect for other clubs and admire the good football they play, but ultimately Real Madrid are Real Madrid. I've always had a thing for them.
"It's a dream, as I said, but also a privilege to play alongside players of such quality, all those world-class stars. It's my life's dream. If this finally happens, I only want to enjoy it.
Manchester United & Liverpool interest
£63 million is obviously a lot of money to pay for a player who was not wholly on the radar of world football before the World Cup kicked off. Manchester United are cash rich though having agreed a world-record kit deal with adidas worth £75 million-aseason while Liverpool are in a similar situation having just sold Luis Suarez for a reported £75 million.
Convincing Rodriguez to the Premier League will be tough task if Real Madrid manage to agree a fee, but it is in this area where Manchester United may hold the key.
Angel Di Maria pursuit
Numerous outlets claims that Rodriguez's move to Real Madrid is wholly reliant of the club's ability to offload Angel Di Maria. The Argentinian is linked with a host of clubs, but the main one is Manchester United.
If Manchester United choose to redirect their interest away from Di Maria and to Rodriguez, Real Madrid may not have the funds to compete. PSG are also thought to be interested in the player, however.
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