Manchester United & Liverpool could miss out on £16m playmaker

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Football News

Manchester United and Liverpool could be about to miss out on Nicolas Gaitan, with reports from Portuguese newspaper Record cited by talkSPORT claiming that Benfica are set to hand the talented playmaker a new contract to remain at the club.

Such reports suggest that Benfica - who are currently sit top of their domestic league with 52 points from their opening 21 matches - are keen to extend his buyout clause to an enormous £37m in order to ward off interest from the likes of the two aforementioned Premier League clubs and that agent Jose Iribarren has been in Lisbon this week to negotiate.

26-year-old Gaitan has proven to be one of the Primeira Liga's most exciting talents in recent seasons since arriving in Europe from Boca Juniors during the summer of 2010.

The Argentine winger - who has earned six senior international caps during his professional career to date - is reportedly a long-term transfer target for Premier League champions Manchester United, while fierce rivals Liverpool are also believed to be on his trail.

If £16 million-rated Gaitan were indeed to extend his stay at the Estadio da Luz, it is hard to presume that both Manchester United and Liverpool would have too much difficulty in moving on to another attainable targets.

In light of their well-documented struggles to keep pace with their rivals since David Moyes replaced Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford, Manchester United are widely expected to invest heavily in rejuvenating the playing squad during the summer and must surely have a number of players in mind to that end.

Liverpool, in contrast, have enjoyed a tremendous season to date under Brendan Rodgers and, given that they trail leaders Chelsea by just four points, must still be regarded as genuine title contenders.

Liverpool's attack has unquestionably been the most impressive area of late, with the likes of Luis Suarez, Daniel Sturridge and Raheem Sterling performing admirably. And while Gaitan would be an impressive addition, it could be suggested that defensive strengthening should be Rodgers' priority at Anfield.

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