Manchester United manager David Moyes is considering a clear out of his squad, reports Mark Ryan and Joe Bernstein of the Mail on Sunday, after lacklustre performances this season have seen the Red Devils hover just outside the Champions League places and nowhere near the title race.
Among the list of potential players leaving Old Trafford is Nani. The Portuguese winger has been linked with a return home, reports Charles Perrin in the Daily Express. Should he be allowed to leave, the move would highlight an error on the Manchester United manager's part.
In September, the winger had just signed a five-year-contract, reported the BBC, keeping him at the club until June 2018. The new contract was seen as a sign of Moyes' plans for the winger, since he was impressed with him.
I'm really pleased Nani has re-signed for the next five years. He has great ability and experience beyond his 26 years. I've been impressed with his approach to training and look forward to working with him in the coming seasons.
Nani has only played eight games this season and hasn't featured in Moyes' plans at all. Having given him a new five-year-contract, it seems Moyes is now doing a u-turn. The Scot has preferred teenager Adnan Januzaj instead of the Portuguese international.
Nani welcomed the new contract in September saying, "I'm very happy that the new manager has shown this faith in me and I'm looking forward to helping the team compete for more honours this season" per the BBC.
In the 2011/12 season, Nani was on top form, getting 15 goals and 15 assist in 43 games, ESPN stats show. However last season he only played 27 times, and now under Moyes, he's seen his chances limited.
Ryan and Bernstein say that Moyes wants to get rid of up to a dozen members of his first-team squad before the start of next season:
The United manager wants to get rid of up to a dozen of his first-team squad before the start of next season and under-performing wingers Nani and Wilfried Zaha are set to follow Anderson out of the club in January.
A product of Sporting Lisbon's academy system, Nani is still held in high regard in the Portuguese capital, but Fulham are trying to hijack his loan move to Sporting, reports The Metro.
With Bryan Ruiz having passed a medical ahead of a switch to PSV Eindhoven, reported by the Daily Star's Colin Harvey, Sporting will be hoping old ties will bring the winger back home.
Fulham coach Rene Meulensteen wants to strengthen his squad as it faces an uphill fight to stay in the Premier League. Having worked with Nani at Manchester United, the coach will be hoping to get the best of the winger if they make a move.