Manchester United's executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward believes he will have to at least match the fee paid for Raheem Sterling to sign Harry Kane, reports the Manchester Evening News.
Manchester City are leading the race to sign Liverpool's infamous contract rebel and are reportedly lining up a bid worth £45 million.
Liverpool will try their best to squeeze another £5m out of the Citizens while counter offers from the likes of Real Madrid and Arsenal could push the final fee closer to their £50m asking price.
The final price of Sterling's inevitable transfer will have a massive impact on Manchester United as Woodward will use the figure as a guideline in negotiations to sign Tottenham's star striker.
Tottenham have already claimed the 21-year-old is not for sale while the player himself has insisted he is happy to remain at White Hart Lane.
Testing Tottenham's resolve
But Manchester United have huge money to spend and Woodward sees a deal for Kane as a chance to prove himself as a tour de force in transfer negotiations.
The club chairman Daniel Levy is known as a notoriously tricky negotiator but is also aware that every player has his price. Woodward is going to test his counterpart's resolve by matching the fee the buying club finally pays for Sterling.
A British record fee
Kane has had just one season of good form, but the 32-goals he scored last season has given Manchester Untied reason enough to believe he will be the best out-and-out striker to come out of England since Alan Shearer.
Tottenham naturally believe that Kane is worth more than Sterling and, should Liverpool achieve their target of £50m for the midfielder, Manchester United may have to pay close to the £59.7m they paid for Angel di Maria last summer.
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