Manchester United are preparing to make what French newspaper Le 10 Sport describe as a ‘big financial effort’ to sign Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti, after being rebuffed in their attempts to land Arturo Vidal.
Sports Witness carries the claims from Le 10, and suggests that United are ready to move for the Italian as they look to find a replacement for the injured Michael Carrick. Verratti has been linked with the Red Devils in the past, but the notion of him making such a switch has remained relatively low key so far this summer.
Yet it’s thought that Louis van Gaal has now identified the diminutive playmaker as an ideal candidate to slot in alongside Ander Herrera in his midfield, and will rival Juventus for his signature.
‘Big financial effort’
Reports from little over a month ago suggest that Verratti could be available to buy for around £17million, though this figure will no doubt fluctuate if Laurent Blanc believes he can recoup more from his sale. Having moved to the Parc des Princes from Italian outfit Pescara in 2012 the 21-year-old has developed a reputation as being a highly-promising asset, and it’s unlikely PSG will allow him to leave for any figure deemed below their valuation.
If indeed the sum is close to the £20million mark then there’s no financial reason why United shouldn’t be considered favourites in this particular race. Chief executive Ed Woodward earlier this week spoke of how the club were ready to make potentially huge waves in the transfer market, and that spending big wasn’t a problem as Van Gaal looks to improve his side.
What’s more, Verratti is somewhat cheaper than the €50million-rated Vidal, who it is thought he is the alternative to. With the Chilean international having seemingly ruled out a transfer when pressed by journalists his suitors have turned elsewhere, and Van Gaal could well profit from spending less than half of the amount he was prepared to splash on the Juve ace.
Though the youngster enjoyed a successful second season at PSG last term he remains a probable sale thanks to the fact that the club need to offload stars due to the Financial Fair Play sanctions in place. If Blanc wants to get his hands on Angel di Maria - it’s common knowledge that he does - he needs to raise the £48million it will take by himself, having already spent the entirety of his allowance on David Luiz.
As such Verratti and Edinson Cavani, who is coincidentally also a United target, are likely candidates to be flogged due to their inclusion amongst the club’s most saleable assets.