Manchester United 'agree Matteo Darmian fee with Torino'

Matteo Darmian: In action for Italy during the Euro 2016 Qualifier against Bulgaria.
Image: Matteo Darmian in action for Italy during the Euro 2016 Qualifier against Bulgaria.

Manchester United have agreed a fee with Torino for Italy international right-back Matteo Darmian, according to Sky Italia sources.

Talks between the clubs have been ongoing and, after rejecting United's first two bids, sources understand United have now met an asking price of £12.7m for the prized defender.

Darmian is a versatile defender who is capable of playing in either full-back spot, though his favoured position is on the right, but also has experience at centre-half and at 6ft tall offers a strong aerial presence.

Louis van Gaal was acutely aware of United's vulnerability at set-pieces last season and it cost the team on more than one occasion, including in the 1-1 draw with Chelsea in October, when 5ft 7in Rafael was left marking Didier Drogba at a corner with costly results.

Speaking in November, van Gaal said: "In set plays, it is very difficult but that is because of the height of the team - maybe you can advise me to buy tall players."

United have made upgrading their right-back position a priority this summer after Antonio Valencia - who has spent the majority of his career in midfield - was forced to assume the role last season.

Chelsea's Didier Drogba jumps above Rafael to score against Manchester United.
Image: Chelsea's Didier Drogba jumps above Rafael to score against Manchester United.

Brazilian right-back Rafael featured just 11 times for United last season after struggling with injury and subsequently falling out of favour with van Gaal.

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The club are now willing to listen to offers for the 24-year-old, according to Sky sources, and Galatasaray, Napoli and Fiorentina have all shown an interest in signing him.

Dani Alves was linked with a move to Old Trafford before signing a new contract with Barcelona while United also maintained an interest in Everton defender Seamus Coleman but now van Gaal has identified Darmian as the man to anchor the right side of his defence next season.

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