Sir Alex Ferguson has long searched for a midfield playmaker to naturally succeed Paul Scholes, and his scouring could finally come to an end this summer.
That is in light of Barcelona midfielder Thiago Aalacantra’s availability becoming apparent, after the 21-year-old’s father revealed he is ready to quit the Nou Camp.
Due to the plethora of attacking midfield talent within the Barca ranks, Thiago has found his first-team opportunities limited throughout his tenure with the Catalans.
Despite this, he has gone on to become a full Spanish international, but seems ready to accept that his future lies away from the La Liga champions-in-waiting.
His father Mazinho told reporters in his native land: “My son would play a lot more in any other team in the world.
“He’s learning a lot playing with great players but Thiago is very ambitious and needs to play.”
In reaction, United look set to return for a player they bid £15m for 18 months ago.
That bid was swiftly thrown out by then-Barca boss Pep Guardiola, but with little sign of Thiago becoming a regular fixture in the Catalans’ starting 11 since, current chief Tito Vilanova would be more open to the idea of letting him go.
He remains regarded as one of the hottest prospects in world football, and thus would still command a hefty fee if a move does come to fruition this summer.
A £25m release fee clause is present in Thiago’s contract, but Ferguson would hope to do business for a lesser fee, given that the prodigy is an irregular starter in Spain.
It is thought that should United return with another £15m offer for the player, it would be seriously considered by the four-time European champions.
And therefore, it looks highly plausible that Thiago completes a switch between two of the world’s most famous and decorated clubs in the close season.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.