French champions Paris Saint-Germain will not sell Edinson Cavani to Manchester United this summer.
This is according to French football journalist Julien Laurens, who warned United fans to forget about the prospect of Cavani leading the line at Old Trafford next summer, via talkSPORT.
Reports on Tuesday claimed Louis van Gaal wanted to make Cavani, who turns 29 in February, his fifth summer signing. But after UEFA lifted PSG’s Financial Fair Play restrictions earlier this month, the French club no longer need to sell in order to spend big this summer.
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Despite the fact Manchester United will be unable to land Cavani, Laurens believes there’s a good chance that the unsettled Angel di Maria will swap Old Trafford for the Parc des Princes over the coming months.
“PSG will not sell Cavani,” he told The Sports Bar. “The idea is to get Di Maria from United, he wants to leave, he wants to go to Paris. He wanted to leave last summer – everything was done between him and PSG, but the problem was Financial Fair Play at the time which meant PSG couldn’t afford him, hence he joined United.
“He still wants to come to Paris and now they don’t have FFP sanctions against them, they’re free to sign him and pay the wages he wants.
“I can see him going from United to PSG but I definitely can’t see Cavani going the other way – not at any price
“Simply because PSG see Cavani as the future when Zlatan Ibrahimovic retires, which will be next summer, and they played a lot of money to prepare him as the next top striker – he was actually their top scoring striker last season and scored more than Ibra, so they rely on him a lot.”
Cavani has been unhappy at PSG
Cavani, who has also been linked with Arsenal, scored 31 goals in all competitions last term and 25 goals in the season before that.
The Uruguay international earned a lucrative move to PSG in the summer of 2013 after netting an impressive 104 goals in 138 matches with Napoli but has never felt entirely happy at the Parc des Princes due to his squad status.
PSG boss Laurent Blanc, in order to accommodate both Cavani and star man Zlatan Ibrahimovic, has often sacrificed the former by deploying him in wide areas.
But Ibrahimovic, 33, is a striker in decline and appears to be coming to the end of his spell as a world-class No. 9.
Cavani is more than ready to step up and fill the void left by Zlatan, but might jump at the opportunity to join Louis van Gaal’s project at Manchester United if PSG agree to sell.
Wayne Rooney is an issue for potential new strikers
But with Wayne Rooney perhaps the only undroppable player in Van Gaal’s squad - due to his status as club captain - there would be a high chance that Cavani would face the same dilemma at Old Trafford anyway.
Van Gaal needs to find at least one more striker who will be prepared to play second-fiddle to Rooney in the big matches next season.
United have also been linked with the likes of Tottenham’s Harry Kane, Christian Benteke of Aston Villa and Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema in recent weeks, but all three strikers would be unprepared to leave their current club unless offered first-team assurances by Van Gaal.
Manchester United fans: which striker should Louis van Gaal sign this summer? Should he drop Wayne Rooney - or move the skipper’s position? Have your say int he comments below!