Manchester United and Manchester City are two of a host of clubs ready to stage a bidding war for the services of Porto defender Danilo, who finds himself one of the most sought-after players in Europe ahead of the summer transfer window.
Spanish outlet Marca claim that the the aforesaid British giants join the likes of Real Madrid, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain in having registered an interest in the full-back, and as a result Porto are due to be inundated with offers as soon as this season ends.
The 23-year-old’s current contract at the Estadio do Dragao is set to run out in 2016, meaning that if his club don’t cash in on him this summer or tie him to a new deal, they run the risk of losing him for considerably less money next January, or even seeing him walk for nothing upon his deal’s expiration.
That’s a scenario president Pinto da Costa is almost certain to want to rule out, particularly with Danilo worth a mooted €25 million. If the clubs in question decide to partake in a battle for his services the eventual figure could top €30 million, which would give Porto plenty of money to not only buy in a replacement but also improve other areas of their squad.
Favourites for his signature
At the moment it appears that Real Madrid are the side most closely linked with the youngster - hence the birth of reports in Marca - but that doesn’t mean that Carlo Ancelotti has his man, far from it.
Barcelona are out of the running this summer due to their transfer ban but both City and United will have money to play with, and with the Premier League usually having the jump on Ligue 1 in terms of appeal, the Manchester clubs could go neck and neck for his signature.
In that instance one would have to side with United’s claim given that City have Pablo Zabaleta ruling the roost in Danilo’s favoured position at right-back. Micah Richards, who was once tipped to have a prosperous career ahead of him in England, has been forced to seek a loan move to Fiorentina in search of game-time, and with Zabaleta only 30 he could be the first-choice for Manuel Pellegrini for a long time yet.
United's need for a right-back
In contrast rumours continue to suggest that Louis van Gaal may be looking for a new right-sided defender to add to his squad, with neither Rafael da Silva or Antonio Valencia appearing overly consistent in the position to date.
Danilo has 11 caps for Brazil’s national senior side to date, indicating that he’s far from the raw talent many might presume he is, and having been a mainstay in Porto’s starting XI since 2012 he looks ready for a big move.
It’s difficult to say for definite that he would adequately adapt to Premier League football, but from the outside looking in it appears as though he could be a useful addition to United’s squad. The Primeira Liga is a far cry from England’s top flight, but with age on his side Danilo could well become a good option moving forward.
United fans do you think you need a new right-back this summer? If not what positions are you looking to address? Let us know in the comments box below...