Manchester United have seen a €60million (£52.4m) bid for Alvaro Morata rejected – with Real Madrid now seeking in the region of £78million for the striker.
United have made the Spain star their No 1 priority this summer after abandoning efforts to sign Antoine Griezmann last week due to Jose Mourinho’s desire to sign a central striker.
But their opening offer for former Juventus man Morata has been quickly rebuffed by Real – with Sky Sports News reporting that their opening gambit did not include their in-demand keeper David de Gea.
Real Madrid are yet to officially bid for De Gea, and though United are keen to keep the goalkeeper, their hand could be swayed by both the player’s wish to leave and their own desire to land Morata.
The Spain international scored 20 goals in all competitions for Real last season, as the club clinched La Liga and the Champions League.
But reports have indicated that United will not be held to ransom over Morata and it is claimed they will instead turn their focus to Torino’s Andrea Belotti, who has a €100m (£87.3m) release clause in his contract.
And Wednesday’s Paper Talk suggested they were also in talks with Dortmund hotshot Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and had offered him a five-year deal.