Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Man Utd star offers himself to Real Madrid as Fabrizio Romano drops update on Ratcliffe links to Everton man

Sir Jim Ratcliffe could look to sell Raphael Varane at Manchester United

Sir Jim Ratcliffe could look to sell Raphael Varane at Manchester United

Manchester United defender Raphael Varane has reportedly offered his services to Real Madrid as a free agent this summer with Fabrizio Romano providing an update on Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s plans to sign a big-money replacement this summer.

The World Cup winner was a big-money arrival from Real in the summer of 2021, with the defender penning a three-year deal worth a whopping £340,000 a week a salary that makes him third on United’s list of top earners. However, after failing to deliver on a consistent basis during his time at Old Trafford, Varane has found his future at Manchester United very much under the spotlight.

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Indeed, while the Red Devils do hold an option to extend his contract by a further 12 months, it remains highly unlikely that United will do so, with new minority shareholder Sir Jim Ratcliffe seeing his wages as a chance to make an enormous saving this summer.

As a result, speculation over where the £41m signing will wind up next has been swirling around for months. He has been talked up as a potential big-name arrival for the Saudi Pro-League, while there has also been fleeting mentions with a move to Bayern Munich.

However, Varane has never been happier than he was at Real Madrid and now reports in Spain claim he has offered himself to his former club as a free agent this summer – a transfer prospect that has heightened amid an alarming injury crisis at the Bernabeu this season.

To that end, Carlo Ancelotti has been forced to play veteran full-back Nacho as an emergency centre-half alongside Antonio Rudiger in light of the injuries sustained by David Alaba and Eder Militao.

Varane tipped to return to Real Madrid

As a result, it is widely expected that the Spanish giants will sign a new defender this summer, with William Saliba of Arsenal and Lille’s Leny Yoro among those to be linked.

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However, with the signing of Kylian Mbappe also on the agenda, funds are likely to be tight at the Bernabeu and it may be president Florentino Perez opts for a more conservative approach when it comes to adding to their central defensive options.

To that end, Varane would be a safe option for the club, especially with Los Blancos well aware of what the Frenchman is capable of, having served them with such distinction over his previous spell at the club.

As far as Varane’s future at Man Utd is concerned, the report claims ‘there is no intention, on either side, to extend their relationship’ at Old Trafford and ‘he wants to return to where he was happy’.

Furthermore, with Varane potentially arriving ‘at zero cost and with a salary that would fit perfectly into Real Madrid’s salary scale’, the temptation to bring him back is said to be an appealing one for Perez.

As for United, Ratcliffe has made the strengthening of his central defence a major aim this summer, and could even look to bring in two signings in that position amid claims Jonny Evans will also leave at the season’s end.

Fabrizio Romano chats Man Utd defender signing with Branthwaite linked

To that end, United have been strongly linked with moves for the likes of Gleison Bremer, Jean-Clair Todibo and Antonio Silva this summer.

However, it is Jarrad Branthwaite whose name has been most strongly linked, despite TEAMtalk exclusively breaking the news about Everton’s huge demands for the defender’s sale this summer.

Providing an update on the chase, and what to expect next, Romano has provided an update.

“Jarrad Branthwaite is having a fine season with Everton and we’re again seeing media reports of Manchester United being interested in the talented young centre-back, though other outlets are also suggesting he might be too expensive for them,” Romano said in his latest column for Caught Offside.

“The reality is that it’s still early days on this story – for sure Branthwaite is appreciated by Man United and is one of three or four names on their shortlist, but we’ll have to wait and see if this develops into anything more.

Jarrad Branthwaite and Raphael Varane stats comparison

Comparing Branthwaite and Varane’s stats this season

“As for Everton’s price, my understanding is that clubs are still waiting to understand Everton’s decision on the asking price. We have to wait for that. But as previously reported, United have been scouting important centre-backs like Jean-Clair Todibo, Gleison Bremer, Antonio Silva, as well as Branthwaite, and they could make at least one signing in that position this summer, or perhaps two, depending on what will happen with Raphael Varane.

“A reminder of what I reported earlier this week – Varane has not been offered a new contract by United. We had rumours back in March about a new contract based on appearances and game time, but I’m told this is not true. Let’s see if things change, but as of today Varane has not received any proposal from the club, so his future remains open and it could be that he’ll need replacing ahead of next season.

“Finally on Man United, 17-year-old Port Vale wonderkid Baylee Dipepa has been followed and tracked by the United scouting team. Let’s see if they decide to proceed with negotiations, but it will depend on the new board they are building now, so we can just be patient on that one.”

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