Manchester United’s bid to sign Bruno Fernandes this month is off, according to reports.
United have been locked in talks over a deal for Fernandes for well over a week and reports on Tuesday claimed that common ground had finally been reached and that a deal to confirm his transfer to Old Trafford would soon be announced.
However, super-agent Jorge Mendes cast doubts over the potential deal on Wednesday evening when he stated that he doesn’t know if the talented Sporting Lisbon midfielder will move to Old Trafford.
“If he doesn’t leave now, he will leave for sure in the summer because Sporting have already spoken with other clubs,” said Mendes.
“Something will happen but I am not sure if now or at the end of the season.”
And it appears those fears have been confirmed after a reports in The Sun stated United’s chances of signing the 25-year-old are officially dead in the water.
In an exclusive, the paper cites two reasons why the deal is off: namely that Sporting are refusing to lower their valuation of the player and that United are unwilling to cave in to what they perceive as ‘unreasonable demands’.
In addition, it’s claimed that United’s co-chairman Joel Glazer, who signs off on transfers, believes the structure of the deal that Sporting want is not right and that Fernandes is not worth the money.
As per the report, United’s final – and what they thought was fair – offer for Fernandes was £42.5m up front and a further £8.5m in bonuses.
Sporting, however, were demanding £68million.
The Sun now states United are actively pursuing alternative midfield targets, but with just eight days of the window left, the club has left themselves with little time to find the right player to lift their faltering side.
United told Grealish is better than Fernandes
One man who United have been told to target is Aston Villa star Jack Grealish, with Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson telling the Daily Star: “Forget Bruno Fernandes – Manchester United should be trying to sign Jack Grealish.
“He is one of the top ten players in the Premier League right now. He is absolutely different class and would walk into almost any other Premier League team.
“Grealish would walk into the United team. Tottenham tried to get him not long ago and he’d walk into their team right now as well.
“I can’t explain to people how good this kid is. Aston Villa lost 6-1 to Manchester City and he was the only one who still had time on the ball.
“His composure is something else.
“I don’t understand why clubs aren’t queuing up to try and sign him. Is it because he’s English but isn’t playing for England?
“Bruno Fernandes is a full international. He’s had clubs all over Europe looking at him. But he’s never played in this league before. Grealish has. And he’s ripping it up every week.
“I love watching him play. If I had to pay to watch one player in the Premier League, I’d watch him.”
After Wednesday’s disappointing 2-0 defeat at home to Burnley, Solskjaer admitted reinforcements were badly needed after being questioned about Fernandes.
“We are working to improve and get players in and hopefully we can get something over the line,” the United boss said.
United are also looking to sign a new striker to cover the injury sustained by Marcus Rashford ensuring the last week of the transfer window is likely to be extremely busy for the struggling Red Devils.