Manchester United are still hot on the idea of landing rising German star Julian Draxler in the New Year, but if Real Madrid legend Raul has anything to do with it then they’ll have to look elsewhere.
The Spaniard has reportedly been active in trying to persuade his former club to move for Draxler rather than let him make a switch to England, as he is impressed by the potential to develop that the youngster has.
This rumour comes courtesy of Fifa agent Francois Gallardo and, if true, could mean that United are about to lose out on a target worth £37m. Draxler has been the apple of many a Premier League clubs' eye for the past few months, but it's only recently that the speculation is beginning to hit fever pitch.
Last season it was claimed that he had rejected the offer of an Arsenal move, but the situation may now have changed what with Bayern Munich's unerring dominance over the Bundesliga only having increased in recent times.
If he is to move to the Premier League then a switch to United might not be his immediate priority. Not only are Louis van Gaal's side looking unconvincing without Champions League football, but there's also a surplus of attacking options available to him, meaning that Draxler would hardly be guaranteed regular game time were to end up there.
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The other major story doing the rounds suggests that the Red Devils have made an offer to take Gerard Pique back to Old Trafford, as Barcelona have received three bids.
The centre-back has become a lynchpin at the Nou Camp, but that looks to have changed under Luis Enrique. The new boss in Catalonia appears to favour others such as Marc Bartra, Jeremy Mathieu and Javier Mascherano in the heart of his defence, and Pique's recent form has been less than inspiring.
Yet the reports in question claim they're the only Premier League side to have submitted offers, with Manchester City and Chelsea also said to be keen admirers of the 27-year-old's abilities. United might have the advantage given Pique's ties to their club, but if they can't offer him success then he'll surely opt to go elsewhere.