Manchester United are plotting a big summer bid to sign Juan Cuadrado, according to recent speculation.
The Daily Express - citing unnamed Spanish sources - claim that the Red Devils are preparing to launch an offer worth £30 million for the Fiorentina winger who impressed at the recent World Cup with Colombia.
Indeed, the same source further suggests that Manchester United have been in contact with Cuadrado's current employers to assure them of the seriousness of their pursuit, with new manager Louis van Gaal said to be the one driving the interest in this particular target.
Tough transfer battle
Despite Van Gaal's apparent eagerness to sign Cuadrado, the strength of interest from other top European clubs in his services will ensure that Manchester United's pursuit of the 26-year-old will be fraught with difficulty.
Bayern Munich and Barcelona are Cuadrado's other top suitors, two clubs with major reputations who may just be able to edge ahead of their main competitor with the promise of Champions League football next season.
Cuadrado's own concerns about how he may fare in the slightly more physical and uncompromising world of English football could also prove a potentially massive hurdle for Van Gaal, although one would imagine that Fiorentina - who only signed the player on a full-time basis from Udinese earlier this summer - would find it somewhat difficult to resist such a strong cash offer.
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Cuadrado - what United need?
While Cuadrado - whose fabulous ability and versatility are certainly not in question - would surely prove an exciting addition at Old Trafford, Manchester United fans could perhaps be forgiven for harbouring one or two concerns that such a big offer is not being made for one or two slightly higher priority targets.
Rather than splashing a hefty sum on another attack-minded player, it could certainly be argued that Van Gaal - who claimed on Thursday that it could be a month before Manchester United make any further additions to their current squad - would be better off focusing his immediate transfer attentions on the quest for a more fully-rounded midfield presence and at least one new world-class, experienced centre-back.