Atletico Madrid centre-back Miranda has revealed his agent is currently working through offers from England and Spain, fuelling rumours Manchester United and Barcelona are set to go head-to-head for the Brazilian's signature.
Despite enjoying a terrific La Liga-winning season with Atletico, Miranda was overlooked by Brazilian coach Luiz Felipe Scolari for the host nation's World Cup squad. Speaking to Brazil's Radio ESPN, he suggests the summer may turn out to be extremely busy without a tournament excursion, per Paulo Freitas of Sky Sports:
I have some offers and we are negotiating. I have offers from Spanish and English leagues and from some less important ones too. My agent is in Europe to decide my future, my buy-out fee at Atletico Madrid is €30million, but that can be negotiated.
At 29 years old, Miranda would offer United vital experience after the departures of Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand. He is by no means cheap and offers a solution to United's defensive frailties for the next few years, but he certainly can't be considered a long-term replacement for the two Old Trafford legends.
Miranda made 45 appearances during the 2013-14 campaign, which saw Atletico take the La Liga crown and reach the Champions League final, scoring four goals and providing one assist, per WhoScored.com. He is a thoughtful defender—someone who can read dangerous situations before they develop—and is athletic enough to dominate both on the ground and in the air.
It is easy to see why Barcelona are said to be interested in signing the player who has become one of Diego Simeone's most vital stars. La Blaugrana are in a similar situation to United. They head into next season after a faltering year and need to replace legendary captain Carles Puyol, suggesting experience and world-class quality are needed.
Although the interest Miranda speaks of is yet to be confirmed by either club, United and Barca remain obvious destinations.
It is unlikely Arsene Wenger would sanction a move to Arsenal considering the quality of Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker, while Chelsea's centre-back numbers are filled (even more so with the addition of Kurt Zouma). Liverpool and Tottenham are unlikely to drop the aforementioned price on such a player.
In Spain, Real Madrid are arguably the only team aside from Barca who could afford Miranda's services. For obvious reasons, a transfer between the two is extremely unlikely.
Miranda's comments indicate he is certainly up for grabs during the summer. It's interesting to note his buyout clause can be "negotiated," suggesting the price may need to be lowered if a move is to go ahead. This would certainly suit both United and Barcelona, who have other squad areas to improve alongside defence.
Louis van Gaal needs to strike a fine balance of youthful exuberance and experience when setting up his United squad. Miranda falls into the latter category as a natural leader, but his value is decreasing rapidly alongside the pitfalls of age. With this in mind, the new boss may be tempted to spend elsewhere.
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