Real Madrid's Argentine winger Angel di Maria has hit out at "lies" in the media after reports suggested he was pushing for a move in January.
Per ESPN FC's Dermot Corrigan, there are suggestions that the continual media reports are a sign that club president Florentino Perez is keen to see the player move on in the January window.
Di Maria angry at 'lies' that he wants to move to Monaco, denies his goal celebrations are messages to Florentino: http://t.co/iXcHhNwZul— Dermot Corrigan (@dermotmcorrigan) December 23, 2013
Corrigan quotes Di Maria saying in an interview with AS (Spanish):
I do not want to go. I want to win my place in the team. Not me, nor anyone in my camp, has asked for a new contract. What came out was lies.
I have been through some difficult days. I am just thinking about Real Madrid and I am still working hard. I have to keep going and try to earn a place in the team.
While the Independent's Charles Reynolds reports Manchester United and Arsenal are interested in the tricky winger, it is Monaco who have been most heavily linked to him since the summer.
Earlier this month, Marca suggested via Football Espana that a deal to take the Argentine to the principality was close, but it appears that was not exactly the case.
Even so, Di Maria is represented by Portuguese super agent Jorge Mendes—per Transfermarkt—and that in itself means that links with Monaco are inevitable.
Of Monaco's extensive transfer activity this year, many signings have been Mendes clients—including Joao Moutinho, James Rodriguez and Radamel Falcao—as discussed by Agence France-Presse via the Global Post.
As of last week, though, Perez was happy to report that there had been no bids for Di Maria up to this point, per Sky Sports' Francisco Acedo.
Given Di Maria's performances, it is astonishing that his sale would be considered. The Argentine has provided five assists and three goals in the Champions League alone this season, but has often found himself on the bench when all players are available.
Still wouldnt surprise me if Di Maria to Monaco stories continued, as Madrid could do with some new faces & money still tight at Bernabeu.— Dermot Corrigan (@dermotmcorrigan) December 23, 2013
It is an incredible state of affairs that also saw the club sell Mesut Ozil at the start of the campaign, but Real Madrid are no normal football club.
Di Maria and Ozil may have done little wrong, but with Gareth Bale signed for approximately €100 million in the summer, they are no longer in favour at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Whatever the truth behind Di Maria's insistence that he intends to stay and fight for his place at the club, it would appear he may not be in a white shirt much longer, whether it be at the behest of Real Madrid or his agent.