Manchester United in talks with Real Madrid over signing midfielder Casemiro in a deal worth over £60m; Man Utd are receiving enough encouragement to give them belief a deal is possible; United were prepared to pay £67.6m for Ajax forward Antony
Thursday 18 August 2022 23:38, UK
Real Madrid are open to the sale of Casemiro to Manchester United in a potential deal worth in excess of £60m.
Talks are ongoing between the two clubs with United receiving enough encouragement to give them belief that a deal is possible.
The 30-year-old is greatly appreciated by Real boss Carlo Ancelotti. However, Casemiro is reportedly not viewed as indispensable given the wealth of options the Champions League holders have in the centre of the pitch.
Luka Modric signed a contract extension to 2023 and Toni Kroos also provides pedigreed experience to mesh with younger talents, Eduardo Camavinga, Aurelien Tchouameni and Federico Valverde.
Real cannot guarantee a spread of minutes to Manchester United's potential new signing. It will be viewed as sensible to get his wages off the books, while banking a big transfer fee.
United have desperately needed a defensive midfielder for years and the Brazilian offers attributes manager Erik ten Hag does not possess in his squad.
Whether Casemiro is actually minded to exit the Bernabeu for Europa League football at Old Trafford is the unknown, even with the prospect of doubling his salary.
He is considering his options given he needs game time ahead of the World Cup and has been tempted by United's proposal.
Real have stressed the final decision is Casemiro's to make.
The former Sao Paulo man has played over 300 times for Madrid and has been part of five Champions League successes.
Sky Sports News has been told Manchester United were prepared to pay £67.6m for Ajax forward Antony.
Intermediaries involved in the negotiation were informed Ajax would not accept the offer and want to keep the winger.
United are currently deciding whether to make an improved bid, but PSV Eindhoven's Cody Gakpo is seen as a more realistic option.
Recruiting a forward is likely to be addressed in the final week while the club focus on signing a midfielder.
With two weeks to go until the transfer window closes, Man Utd are looking at other midfield options with a move for Juventus' Adrien Rabiot now increasingly unlikely due to wage demands. Though, they have increased interest in Brighton's Moises Caicedo.
United are deciding internally whether to formalise the interest given Brighton's strong "no intention of selling" stance.
The 20-year-old Ecuadorian impressed in Brighton's 2-1 opening-weekend win at Old Trafford as Graham Potter's side handed new United boss Erik ten Hag defeat in his first game in charge.
Caicedo only made his Premier League debut for Brighton at Arsenal in April. He has become a first-team regular for Potter having started their last 10 league games and has made 12 appearances in all competitions for the club.
United are long-term admirers of Caicedo - they were looking at signing him when he joined Brighton from Ecuadorian club Independiente del Valle in February 2021.
However, Brighton's transfer policy is that they will only sell at the right time for the right price.
United will have internal discussions about whether to make their interest formal with an official bid.
Caicedo, whose deal at Brighton lasts until the summer of 2025, also scored his first Premier League goal against United in the stunning 4-0 win at the Amex Stadium in May.
In October last year, he became the first player born in the 21st century to score in CONMEBOL World Cup Qualifying, with a goal in Ecuador's 4-2 win over Uruguay.
Man Utd also remain in the market for a forward player, with PSV Eindhoven's Cody Gakpo a player of interest.
They are being respectful of PSV's involvement in the Champions League qualifiers and are likely to pursue the 23-year-old in the final week of the window.
Stuttgart's Sasa Kalajdzic is also a player they are looking at. The Austrian may be reasonably priced as he has entered the final year of his contract and wants to come to Old Trafford.
Man Utd have been offered the chance to sign Atletico Madrid's Alvaro Morata with the former Chelsea striker becoming an interest to Ten Hag's side.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is another forward that came up for United during talks with Barcelona but as it stands, their interest has not gone any further with Chelsea pushing to sign him.
Cristiano Ronaldo may be allowed to leave United this month if Ten Hag decides his departure would be better for the club going forward.
United's position has not changed and Ronaldo is not for sale. He still has a year left on his contract and United have the option of extending it by another 12 months.
Sky Sports News reported on Monday that Atletico Madrid and Chelsea were still two possible destinations for Ronaldo if United change their stance and let him leave.
However, there are senior figures at both clubs who are not convinced they should sign Ronaldo.
Who will be on the move this summer before the transfer window closes at 11pm on September 1?
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