Sporting Lisbon have sent a warning to Manchester United over their pursuit of midfielder Bruno Fernandes.
With just over two weeks of the transfer window remaining Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s need is greater than Sporting’s desire to cash in on the Portugal midfielder.
And if Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku were to leave, the Norwegian would almost certainly need to bolster his squad who finished sixth last season.
United are also understood to be interested in Newcastle’s Sean Longstaff, but the Geordies have slapped a £50million price tag on the youngster to scare off the Red Devils.
Fernandes though is believed to be Solskajer’s priority, but Sporting are demanding at least £56million for the player, according to Portuguese outlet RTP.
“I don’t know if there are many or if there are few [interested clubs],” Sporting Lisbon president Frederico Varandas said. “What I know, a lot has been spoken of values, coming to the press, €55m, €62m… for that he doesn’t leave, for sure.”
Varandas also suggested Fernandes could remain in Portugal, he added: “If Bruno Fernandes leaves, players with quality will come. But if Bruno leaves.”
Reports on Sunday from Portugal suggested that United had finally landed their man after a patient approach, having raised their initial €50m bid for the midfielder to €61.2m (£55m).
Gazzetta dello Sport journalist Nicolo Schira also stated talks are ongoing between the sides but a positive conclusion is expected to be reached in a matter of days – with Fernandes set to become the club’s third new arrival of the summer after Dan James and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
However, A Bola (via Sport Witness) threw a spanner in the works by claiming that United had been rushed into action due to growing interest from Paris Saint-Germain.
Now it seems United will have to pay closer to €70million for the 24-year-old Fernandes, who hit 32 goals and claimed 18 assists last season.