There has been a lack of action in the Robin van Persie transfer saga since Juventus, Manchester City and Manchester United were confirmed as bidders last week, but the Red Devils may feel that they are in the strongest position.
The pattern of the last few years has been that when Manchester City want a player, they are able to use their financial might as a means of blowing all rival suitors away.
Their inability to replicate that routine thus far on this occasion suggests that there could be truth to the rumours that they are trying to limit their spending on account of the soon to be implemented financial fair play rules.
It is thought that they won’t be able to up their offer until they get shot of Roque Santa Cruz or Emmanuel Adebayor and, though the latter is the subject of genuine interest from Tottenham, it is proving a rather complicated task.
Boss Roberto Mancini let slip his frustration at the lack of progress on Thursday, saying that: “This year will be harder than last so we need to improve our team. We have a man who works for this and we hope that they can do a good job.”
Juventus, while considered outsiders due to Serie A’s lack of star power, were expected to prove the most committed chasers, willing to pay whatever it took to sign the striker, but recent comments from Giuseppe Marotta hint otherwise.
He said: “Van Persie is a great player but Arsenal do not intend to lose him. And you cannot indulge in a player if the owners don’t want to sell. Talk of our real interest in him seems excessive to me.”
All of which indicates that Manchester United are at the head of the queue, with Sir Alex Ferguson already admitting their involvement in the process and no clear obstacles in their way. They are 5/2 to regain the Premier League title next season.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.