Man Utd chiefs balk at immediate setback as transfer for defensive star begins

Date published: Thursday 15th April 2021 6:53 - Jonny Whitfield

Nikola Milenkovic, Aaron Connolly Serbia v Republic of Ireland March 2021

Manchester United have hit an immediate hurdle after setting a transfer for Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic in motion, a report claims.

Reports over the last few months have claimed that a new centre-back is among United‘s top summer priorities. Indeed, boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to find a new long-term partner for Harry Maguire. He currently has Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly, but wants a fresh face at the back.

Alongside several reports, a number of names have surfaced on the Red Devils’ radar. Sevilla’s Jules Kounde and Villarreal’s Pau Torres are among those to have entertained links with Old Trafford.

However, Fiorentina’s Serbian international Milenkovic is also a target.

The 23-year-old will have one year left on his deal at the end of the season, but he has supposedly decided to snub an extension in favour of a new challenge.

In fact, Italian publications have said that the Premier League will be his next destination.

According to The Sun, United have finally set a potential deal for Milenkovic in motion. However, chiefs have hit an immediate roadblock over his transfer fee.

Earlier reports have offered different figures for his valuation, including as low as €25million (£21.6million).

The Sun, though, reports that Fiorentina will demand at least £38million, which United will not pay.

Therefore, there is work to for recently-appointed football director John Murtough to do in driving the fee down.

Milenkovic is among the most consistent centre-backs in Europe, missing only three Serie A matches since the start of last season.

This term, meanwhile, he has helped to keep six clean sheets, with his team 15th in the Italian top flight.

Man Utd make move for talented youngster

As well as first-team additions, United are also on the hunt for talented youth stars.

Indeed, they have a solid record of acquiring hot prospects, having brought in Amad Diallo and Facundo Pellistri in recent months.

The Red Devils are now supposedly after Hibernian talent Ethan Laidlaw.

READ MORE: Man Utd move to land highly-touted young striker despite Leeds trial

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