Manchester United have received a huge boost in their pursuit of Angel di Maria, as major rivals Paris Saint-Germain have admitted they also want to sign him, but that they may not be able to get a deal done.
Speaking at a press conference ahead of PSG’s Ligue 1 clash with Evian on Friday night, manager Laurent Blanc was open about his desire to sign the Real Madrid star before the summer transfer window closes.
United need extras
Manchester United have also been heavily linked with Di Maria and will now feel they are in poll position to snap him up. New Old Trafford manager Louis van Gaal has admitted he is desperate for new signings, a need that became even more stark after the disastrous defeat at home to Swansea City in their opening 2014/15 Premier League fixture on Saturday.
The Red Devils will have thought they had missed out on their man earlier this month when it was reported that PSG were close to completing a deal for the 26-year-old. However, another chance appeared when the big-spending club’s owner revealed talks had broken down because the Argentina international was “too expensive”.
Blanc appeared to be alluding to this situation, which has been brought about by sanctions doled out by UEFA following PSG breaching Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules. They were limited to a 23-player squad in this season’s Champions League and were hit with a net transfer spend limit of €60million, which was all but taken up by the purchase of David Luiz from Chelsea.
Lots of rivals
"There are many clubs interested in Di Maria. PSG cannot do what we want. It’s a difficult case,” he said when asked about the situation.
It appears as though both Manchester United and PSG only need bid the requisite amount to land Di Maria, as Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti earlier on Thursday revealed that the player had asked for a transfer.
Sell to buy
Unless PSG can offload one of their high-profile forwards in the form of Edinson Cavani, Ezequiel Lavezzi or Javier Pastore, they are unlikely to have the budget space to make the Di Maria deal happen.
However, some reports have claimed that Manchester United would have to cough up as much as £60million for Van Gaal to get his man, though the Red Devils have no FFP worries and have more than enough funds at their disposal.
Many people have questioned Real Madrid’s thinking in allowing Di Maria to leave the Santiago Bernabeu this summer, as he was arguably their best player at the end of last season and was crucial in them winning the Champions League.
James Rodriguez was one of the biggest stars of the World Cup in Brazil and he moved to Spain’s capital after it from AS Monaco for a fee in the region of £63million. This meant Madrid needed to sell and president Florentino Perez appears to have decided Di Maria will be the one.