The Nicolas Otamendi transfer saga looks like it has been given a deadline by the defender himself as he has reportedly given Valencia 10 days to settle the deal once and for all. Otamendi is due to return to pre-season on the July 27.
The 27-year-old Argentine has been a prime target for Louis Van Gaal's men for many months now due to Manchester United's fragility in defence last season. Despite expensive additions such as Southampton wonderkid Luke Shaw and World Cup finalist Marcos Rojo, Manchester United never looked the assured package they once did with the likes of Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand and Patrice Evra at the back.
Van Gaal does seem intent on using his youth players this season but he was forced into brining in Paddy McNair and Tyler Blackett to help partner either Phil Jones or Chris Smalling rather than integrate them in when he was fully convinced by their ability.
Van Gaal looks like he wants to stick with Smalling and Jones but as stated before they do not look so convincing all the time together, they lack a leader to teach them a lot of the basics to playing centre half having been deployed in various positions throughout their career.
Otamendi, however, has the nous to win titles which Manchester United seemed to lack. Otamendi won the league four times in a row with Porto, which is nothing to be sniffed at. This earned him his €12 million move to Valencia. Despite only playing one season in La Liga, Otamendi is highly regarded and made the La Liga team of the year, beating the likes of Sergio Ramos, Pepe and Gerard Pique.
Will the deal go through?
The deal does not look entirely certain to go through in the 10 days deadline that Otamendi has set as Manchester United are still in talks for the very decorated (in terms of titles, not just his tattoos) Sergio Ramos. He is the number one target for the Red Devils.
However, if Manchester United do swoop for Ramos then Real Madrid will be making a move for Nicolas Otamendi. Either way Otamendi looks destined to be leaving the Mestalla but it is still undecided where his new home will be. Old Trafford or Estadio Santiago Bernabéu? Not two bad places to end up.
It is thought that if Manchester make an offer for Otamendi, then Victor Valdes will be used as bait, having been left out of Manchester United's USA tour.