Louis van Gaal stoked the flames involving an apparent approach for Real Madrid winger Angel Di Maria at the weekend when he made these comments to the press about the Argentine winger:
"It is a strategy of Manchester United to do that. At this moment, we have five No.9s and four No.10s – and we don’t have wingers to give us attacking width. Or, I should say, we don't have wingers of the highest level, like Ronaldo or Di Maria or somebody like that. So, I have to play in another way – and you have seen that already. I only buy when I think we need to buy – in the position that is necessary."
Di Maria is of course one of the best wingers in the world. His boundless energy and exuberance down the left or right would be tailor-made for the Manchester United style under van Gaal - so it is little wonder they are so apparently keen on the player.
However, Real Madrid will not let him go cheap. In fact, he is so expensive even Paris Saint-Germain decided they could not afford him.
Now Spanish football expert Guillem Balague has given an update on the situation via his official Twitter account:
Di María: RM doesnt know if PSG or MU would pay 60m+ they want. You will have to wait, early days. ... http://t.co/lcOn6D80j3— Guillem Balague (@GuillemBalague) August 13, 2014
As PSG offer di María €8m net (if they agree fee with RM, a big if), MU's job is to convince him to change his mind. Nothing definitive yet— Guillem Balague (@GuillemBalague) August 13, 2014
He claims that Real want €60 million for the flying wide-man, with United and PSG still looking at his potential services.
Ed Woodward maintains that sort of money is available for van Gaal to spend on the right player - something Di Maria clearly is.
But the massive wage of €8 million-per-year is simply a sensational amount. United are already overpaying for Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata's services - they won't want to do it a third time.
Balague's update however would suggest a certain amount of concreteness to the rumours. He is rarely out of the loop, and if he isn't in said loop, he tend to remain quiet.
So, should United spend €60 million on Di Maria?