Man Utd given huge boost in chase for £43m centre-back

Date published: Saturday 12th June 2021 11:10 - Robert McCarthy

Pau Torres; Cristiano Ronaldo Portugal v Spain

Villarreal appear to be clearing the decks for the departure of Pau Torres to Manchester United after landing two potential replacements for the highly-rated centre-back.

The Red Devils are looking to bring in at least three new additions this summer, as they look to close the gap on Premier League champions and bitter rivals Manchester City. Chief among the positions they are looking to strengthen is their central defence, with Torres a top target for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The United boss wants a new partner for Harry Maguire, with neither Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly impressing enough to be long-term regular staters.

As reported by Fichajes, Torres, who impressed as Villarreal beat United in the Europa League final, is said to be at the top of Solskjaer’s wishlist.

Having won Europe’s secondary cup competition, the Spanish outfit qualified for the Champions League. That means they are under no immediate pressure to sell, although recent signings hint at the opposite.

Aissa Mandi has arrived from Real Betis on a free, while Villarreal also completed a permanent deal for Juan Foyth. The former Tottenham man played as a right-back on loan last season but is a centre-back by trade.

Their signings has prompted Fichajes to claims that the LaLiga side will do business for Torres, at the right price.

The 24-year-old currently has a release clause of around £43m. The report adds that Villarreal will not accept a lower bid for one of their star men.

United will, however, face competition from Real Madrid for the talented centre-back. But the Red Devils are in a much better position financially than their Spanish rivals, giving them the edge.


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United target has bizarre contract offer

Meanwhile, a Man Utd and Chelsea-linked star could be the recipient of a truly bizarre contract offer that would be difficult to turn down, per a report.

Man Utd and Chelsea appear to be the two clubs to watch this summer with regards to blockbuster transfers. The Red Devils have stepped up their pursuit of Jadon Sancho, and are in the process of upping their offer after a big first bid. Nevertheless, Man Utd have conducted due diligence and have lined up an alternative should Sancho not sign.

Chelsea, meanwhile, have also been linked with superstar attacking additions. Erling Haaland, Romelu Lukaku and Harry Kane have all been touted as the final piece in Thomas Tuchel’s jigsaw.

Both clubs seem destined to splash the cash. But a player linked to the pair earlier this year would be an altogether more budget-friendly option.

Sergio Ramos is on the verge of departing Real Madrid after 16 years at the club. David Alaba’s arrival has further lessened the need for Real to retain Ramos.

The Spaniard, 35, endured a nightmare campaign after injury struggles limited him to just two league appearances in 2021.


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Free-agent signing a no-brainer

With his contract expiring this month, a host of Premier League clubs were linked with a free agent capture including Man Utd and Chelsea.

Chelsea’s recent success story with Thiago Silva can be cited as a prime example of how a veteran presence can revitalise a defence.

However, per the Mirror (citing the El Primer Palo show on esRadio), Sevilla are willing to offer a mammoth deal.

They report that Ramos will be the recipient of a five-year contract offer.

If offered and accepted, the deal could see Ramos playing top level football into his 40s.

Ramos spent 10 years in Sevilla’s system before joining Madrid in 2005. Should he wish to remain in La Liga, Sevilla would seem to be an ideal club to move to next.

READ MORE: Fernandes happy to see link-up with Man City star banishing key ‘suspicion’

 

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