Man Utd and Serie A powerhouse Juventus have held talks with the agent of Real Madrid playmaker James Rodriguez in a move that could have huge ramifications on the future of Paul Pogba.
Colombian Rodriguez, 28, returned to the Bernabeu this season after a two-year loan spell with Bayern Munich.
His early success with Los Blancos could not be replicated, however, with Rodriguez providing just one goal and two assists in an injury-riddled campaign.
With just one more year remaining on his current contract, Real are understood to be open to selling the man who topped the scorers charts at the 2014 World Cup.
The reasoning behind that notion centers on the ongoing speculation over Paul Pogba’s future, with Rodriguez commonly seen as a possible makeweight in order to facilitate Pogba’s move to long-time admirer Zinedine Zidane at Real.
The Colombian is described as keen to ‘seek a summer move away from Real Madrid,’ with the breakdown in his relationship with Zidane cited as a key factor in his desire to depart.
A swoop for Rodriguez could be pulled off irrespective of the exit of Pogba, with a figure of around €40m previously touted.
Though it appears more likely that the Real forward would be used as a form of makeweight with the article acknowledging the ‘potential swap deal,’ should an agreement be struck.
Man Utd are noted to be ‘keeping an eye on his situation,’ though Juventus have also been credited with holding talks with Mendes.
Meanwhile, Pogba has opened up on his Man Utd frustrations amid an ankle injury that has sidelined him for much of the current campaign.
The France international has not played since Boxing Day, having suffered a setback to foot surgery earlier in the season, but he is stepping up his recovery and will resume training when the club are able to play again.
Pogba gave the full details of his injury, which has restricted him to just eight appearances this season.
“You have to be very patient because, well my injury, I don’t know if people really know what happened,” he added.