Manchester United aren't using the likely transfer of Patrice Evra to Juventus in order to secure a deal for Arturo Vidal, at least for the moment, according to Sky Italia reporter Gianluca Di Marzio.
Di Marzio suggests Vidal's future isn't being considered in the Evra negotiations, as noted on his blog:
Juventus and Manchester United have been negotiating for Evra in the past few days, but they have have not been discussing Arturo Vidal recently. The two clubs had discussed him in the past, but despite reports to the contrary, Juventus and Manchester United didn’t restart the talks about the Chilean international. At the moment there is no on going negotiation, Manchester United has yet to make another advance for Vidal.
Who should Manchester United sign as top priority?
Even so, Di Marzio does expect Evra to join the Turin-based club on Friday, reported in an alternate blog post. The deal is expected to provide United with a €2 million fee, freeing up wages for the 33-year-old who joins Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand on the Old Trafford exit list.
Suggestion that Vidal talks have slowed will fill United followers with nerves. The club has become synonymous with failing transfer negotiations in recent times, an unfortunate run highlighted by David Moyes' disastrous tenure.
The likes of Cesc Fabregas, Thiago Alcantara, Daniele De Rossi and Sami Khedira slipped away from the Scotsman's grasp last summer, forcing United into signing Marouane Fellaini on deadline day, per ESPN. Even though Louis van Gaal's tenure is yet to officially begin until after Netherlands' last World Cup match on Saturday, plenty of business is already going on at the Premier League club.
Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw have joined the club, the former of which can also be chalked up on Moyes' list of failed targets. Evra joins Vidic, Ferdinand and Alexander Buttner on the departure list, as Van Gaal looks to strengthen with fresh talent across the board.
Ryan Giggs, United's assistant manager, believes LvG has the guts to revamp United's hopes. "Louis has a clear philosophy and he sticks to that philosophy," said Giggs, per Ian Whittell of the Daily Star. "He won't be afraid to take over Man United, he will relish it and look forward to it."
While Herrera begins to address United's needs in midfield, the club is crying out for someone of Vidal's ilk. The destructive midfielder possesses excellent tackling skills, boundless energy and a goalscoring threat, three ingredients missing from Moyes' time in charge.
Tom McDermott, writer for Sky Sports, believes talks are ongoing even if progress isn't necessarily being made:
For those asking I don't know about the reports in Chile which suggest Vidal is close to becoming a #mufc player. Just know talks ongoing.— Tom McDermott (@FootballMcD) July 11, 2014
Van Gaal will head into his first season as United boss with a one-up over Moyes if he manages to land such a marquee signing. United's needs extend right through the squad, so it's important the incoming manager complements a handful of well-known names with youth. Vidal is the type of leader the club craves to begin moving forward after finishing seventh last season.
Benfica midfielder Enzo Perez could be an alternative for Vidal and would come in at the cheaper end of £7 million, according to Metro. He is a specialist defensive midfield type and doesn't possess the same explosive attacking instincts as Vidal, but he has underlined his quality with some battling performances for Argentina en route to the World Cup final.
The Red Devils would perhaps capture both in an ideal world, but Van Gaal's priority should be confirming a deal for Vidal. Initial signings or a lack of certainly set the tone for what's to come across 2014-15, something Van Gaal is sure to be aware of.
Business is likely to ramp up when Van Gaal finally heads to England, meaning we can expect progress on the transfer front throughout next week.