Manchester United have had an initial £50million bid for defender Raphael Varane rejected by Real Madrid, who are holding out for £80m. Varane is currently playing for France at Euro 2020, but is believed to be unsettled at his club side following the departure of Zinedine Zidane as manager.
Man Utd chiefs are confident they can still get the 28-year-old, despite having an initial bid rejected, and remain in talks with Madrid over a compromise fee.
Varane is out of contract next year, meaning that United are reluctant to bid as much as £80m given their target will be available for free in 2022.
And the Old Trafford chiefs also know that Madrid need the money, with the club currently in debts of €901m.
Real president Florentino Perez has already stated that the club will have to sell if they are to finance any major signings later in the summer.
And Kylian Mbappe is still a player of interest to the Bernabeu board, with PSG likely to demand a huge fee for the France forward.
Real have already confirmed that captain Sergio Ramos is leaving the club, making the news public in a statement released on Wednesday.
The 35-year-old is at the end of his contract at Madrid, and is understood to have been in negotiations over an extension, with new manager Carlo Ancelotti a known admirer of the Spaniard.
But the two parties have been unable to agree terms, bringing Ramos’ 16-year stay at the club to an end.
The centre-back won five La Liga titles and four Champions Leagues during his time with Real.
United have been heavily linked with a number of attacking players this summer, including former star Cristiano Ronaldo and the striking sensation Erling Haaland.
And chief executive Ed Woodward is also in talks with Borussia Dortmund over signing Jadon Sancho, in a repeat of the negotiations that famously failed in 2020.
Sancho enjoyed another sensational Bundesliga campaign last time out, scoring eight goals and racking up 11 assists in his 26 appearances.
And United still want the 21-year-old Englishman to add further spark to their attack.
But Woodward is said to be “playing poker” with the deal, having had an initial bid rejected.
Former Manchester United centre-back Rio Ferdinand says that, for all of the talk about Sancho and forwards, the defence should be the club’s top priority this summer.
“Defence is the priority and what’s good about the Euros is there will be a good few centre-backs on show there,” Ferdinand told the Sun.
“It’s also about who is available. I went to the World Cup and got bought off the back of a good season but also playing at a major tournament.
“This is a great opportunity for someone else to put themselves in the shop window and be purchased by a big club.
“Manchester United are in the market for a centre-back so what an opportunity for someone.”