Manchester United are so confident of completing a deal for Arturo Vidal next summer that they have set aside £48 million to get the deal done, reports The Express.
And they may well be right to have such confidence as the same report also claims that Juventus are preparing to cash in on the Chile midfielder at the end of the season. That is in part due to the form that Paul Pogba, Andrea Pirlo and Claudio Marchisio have demonstrated so far this season as well as concerns over Vidal's long-term fitness.
Louis van Gaal was also rumoured to be concerned with Vidal's injury record, especially as the 27-year-old was still recovering from a serious knee injury when he appeared unfit during the World Cup this summer. Those reported concerns did not stop newspapers continually linked Vidal with a move to Old Trafford, however.
"We are not looking to enter the market for short-term fixes. We have targets we are looking at for next summer" - Ed Woodward
Big summer target
Eventually Van Gaal opted to sign Daley Blind, who has so far demonstrated his quality as a defensive midfielder. But Michael Carrick, who is approaching the end of his Old Trafford contract, could be on his way out and Vidal could replace him.
Ed Woodward has already hinted that significant funds will be available next summer to Van Gaal to further strengthen his team. The Dutchman blew £150 million on new signings this passing summer.
The executive vice-chairman told shareholders recently: "We are not looking to enter the market for short-term fixes. We have targets we are looking at for next summer. Should any become available in January, which is rare, we will consider acting on it. But in terms of expectations, we all need to recognise that's a low probability."
Allegri happy to sell
Although Massimiliano Allegri is not expected to sanction Vidal's departure in January, he is ready to cash in on the prized asset in the summer. Pogba is becoming the focal point of the team while Pirlo continues to impress despite his age.
Marchisio, who has also been linked with Manchester United in the past, has also impressed and is currently keeping Vidal on the bench. The Chilean was benched for the 3-0 win over Lazo last weekend and has started half of Juventus' 12 Serie A games.