Manchester United Transfer News and Rumours Tracker: Week of April 14
Following their Champions League quarter-final defeat to Bayern Munich, what was left of Manchester United's slim hopes for silverware this season are now gone.
The club will take subtle comfort in knowing that they can now focus all their attention on the rebuilding process at Old Trafford, with this summer fixing up to be a period of pivotal change for the Red Devils.
Read on for all the latest transfer gossip and rumours permeating from the Theatre of Dreams, with this week's news beginning with new revelations surrounding a certain Paris Saint-Germain star and a veteran already among David Moyes' ranks.
Red Devils Set World Cup Transfer 'Deadline'
Friday, April 18
Despite the window not even being open yet, David Moyes has revealed that his transfer plans are already well underway as he prepares for a major overhaul of his squad.
The Manchester Evening News' James Robson quotes the Scot as saying that he hopes to get all business finished by the time the 2014 World Cup kicks off in order to avoid any inflated fees due to improved reputations at the global event:
I’ve got to say I’m well into my planning with my thoughts and ideas getting ready for next year. We’re linked with player after player and every time I go to a game, I’m supposed to signing three or four players from that game.
That isn’t the case, but everyone is well aware we are looking to make signings and will try to do that whenever the opportunity arises. It will probably be after the end of the season before anything takes place, but we have got to look to do one or two things.
It’s difficult as players are going to be going away for the World Cup so it’s maybe not quite as easy as ideally all clubs would like to get the work done early. We cannot guarantee it, but will try to make that happen.
It's no new ideology that transfer values tend to soar following major international tournaments, with players and clubs alike benefiting from the increased spotlight placed upon those particularly impressive stars.
Moyes would be wise to get his business down quickly through this vein of thinking, but the question remains as to whether the biggest stars will be willing to budge before they get their chance to shine.
Moyes Embarks on Portuguese Scouting Mission
Thursday, April 17
United manager David Moyes flew out to Portugal for Wednesday evening Portugal Cup semi-final clash between Porto and Benfica with the aim of getting a closer look at several of his summer targets.
The Daily Mail's John Edwards writes that Dragons centre-back Eliaquim Mangala and striker Jackson Martinez were the main reasons for his presence, but adds that Eagles left back Guilherme Siqueira, on loan from Granada, was also in view:
Mindful that Mangala is also being seriously considered by Manchester City, as Manuel Pellegrini looks to bring in a suitable defensive partner for skipper Vincent Kompany, Moyes seized the opportunity to run the rule over the lynchpin of Porto’s back four before deciding whether to follow up his interest with a bid.
Colombia marksman Martinez has established himself as one of the Portuguese League’s most prolific finishers, to such a degree that he has attracted the attention of Roma, Arsenal and Chelsea, as well as United, in recent weeks.
In a bid to revitalise his squad, Moyes has taken to adopting a very first-hand approach in his scouting since being appointed at the Old Trafford helm, perhaps weary of making a mistake should his faith be wrongly placed in a purchase.
Pep Guardiola Says Toni Kroos' Future 'In His Own Hands'
Wednesday, April 16
Manchester United have received a plate-shifting boost in their hunt to sign Bayern Munich midfielder Toni Kroos after Pep Guardiola admitted the situation is out of his hands.
Gary Jones of the Daily Star quotes the Spanish tactician as saying that the club executives have done their best to extend Kroos' stay at the Allianz Arena, but that it is now up to him what happens this summer:
"[Rummenigge and Sammer] will do everything to keep Toni here. But it is up to Toni. He is a young person, it is his decision."
Of course, even though he has a little more than a year left on his deal, the central star wouldn't come cheap.
Jones quotes a sum of £40 million being required to prise Kroos away from Bavaria, and mentions an eye-watering £260,000-a-week as the salary needed to tempt him to Old Trafford, not far away from the wages of Wayne Rooney.
Real Madrid to Rival Red Devils in William Carvalho Chase
Tuesday, April 15
Manchester United are set to see their move for Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho come under intense pressure after it emerged that Real Madrid are also interested in his services.
Los Merengues are reported to have watched the Portuguese asset three times in the last month, according to The Mirror's John Cross, who writes:
United see Carvalho as one of their main priorities in a summer rebuilding programme and were even hoping to seal the deal before the World Cup. But Real Madrid's interest now means the deal could be about to get a lot more complicated.
One could certainly argue that given their respective reputations at present, a move to the Bernabeu would trump that of a move to Old Trafford for Carvalho.
However, the English giants will undoubtedly persevere in attempting to convince the youngster of a move to Manchester this summer.
Nani Offered in Part-Exchange for PSG's Edinson Cavani
Monday, April 14
It's emerged that in order to land Paris Saint-Germain forward Edinson Cavani, Manchester United are willing to finally part ways with misfit winger Nani.
The Daily Star's Paul Hetherington writes that the English giants are willing to offer £50 million along with their wide man's services in order to land the Uruguayan international:
The Daily Star Sunday broke the news three months ago that the £50million Uruguay star was a major summer target for United.
And we can now reveal that the Old Trafford club hope PSG will be interested in taking Portugal’s Nani, 27, as part of the deal.
Cavani has played second fiddle to Zlatan Ibrahimovic for the majority of his maiden campaign at the Parc des Princes, often featuring out wide and only getting his chance centrally when the Swede has been unavailable.
United will certainly need to shell out a sizeable sum for the South American if they're to convince PSG to let him leave France after only acquiring his services a year ago for a fee of around €64 million.
Rio Ferdinand Admits Old Trafford Exit May Be in Sight
Monday, April 14
Rio Ferdinand has admitted that he intends to continue playing on past the end of the 2013/14 season, but there remains a question mark as to whether that will be as a Manchester United player or not.
Speaking on BT Sport this weekend (h/t Daily Mail's Jack Gaughan), the centre-back insisted there's still life in him yet, and hinted that he could extend his playing days elsewhere unless he's offered a contract extension by United:
I want to continue playing—that’s the aim. The legs haven’t given way yet. Whether that’s at Manchester United or somewhere else depends on what the club want to do.
We’ll have to wait and see at the end of the season. We’ll do what we did last season—speak and see where we’re at.
Ferdinand is admittedly in his twilight years, and one could understand why the Red Devils may be apprehensive about extending the 35-year-old defender's deal, irrespective of the contributions he's made down the years.