Manchester United have identified Saul Niguez as their ideal replacement for Paul Pogba, according to a report.
Pogba’s future has come into question in recent weeks, with plenty of speculation sparked by his agent Mino Raiola.
Raiola claimed that his client was not happy in Manchester and that all parties would have to explore a transfer in 2021. He said that Pogba would have little choice but to find a new club.
Pogba has since played down his agent’s comments, but with his contract expiring in 2022, a move away before then still seems likely.
There are concerns about who would be willing to pay United the kind of fee they would want for the midfielder, who was once the most expensive player in the world.
But should they find a buyer, then they apparently already have a plan in place to fill the void the World Cup winner would leave.
According to Todo Fichajes, United have revived their interest in Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez. They have even worked out how much they would like to pay for him.
The report states that United will not go higher than €70m for the 26-year-old. However, that may not be enough; Atletico want a sum closer to his €150m release clause.
However, while Saul once seemed destined to stay at Atletico, a move could be more of a possibility now.
The Spain international has fallen down the pecking order in recent weeks. Therefore, he could be more receptive to offers elsewhere.
United could be a particularly interesting destination for him. He admitted earlier this year that links with the Old Trafford club were flattering.
If United were able to agree a deal for him in January, though, it is speculated that he would not arrive until the following summer.
Double deal with Atleti?
Saul is not the only Atletico player to be linked with a move to Old Trafford.
A separate report has revealed that United are still “pushing hard” to try and bring Kieran Trippier back to the Premier League.
United want to add another right-back to their squad, and Trippier has proven himself again in Spain.