The Croat schemer was one of Sir Alex Ferguson’s top targets two summers ago as he sought out a replacement for Paul Scholes, but Harry Redknapp persuaded him to remain at Tottenham, before he made the switch to Real Madrid for £33m ahead of this campaign.
United have since brought in Shinji Kagawa to orchestrate things from midfield, but the Japanese star operates in a more advanced role than Modric, meaning United are still lacking in a string puller from the middle of the park.
Following a difficult maiden voyage with Los Merengues, Modric has found himself way down the pecking order, unable to oust either Sami Khedira or Xabi Alonso from the central midfield berths in Jose Mourinho’s side. His toils have been so extreme that Marca recently voted him as La Liga’s worst signing of the season.
His wonder strike at Old Trafford represented just his second goal of the season and, while he’s never been regarded as a goalscoring midfielder, he could have expected a bulkier haul in a side that scores as freely as Real.
Despite his far from stellar season, it is believed that the pint-sized playmaker is in no hurry to depart the Spanish capital, meaning the Red Devils would still have to splash out if they wanted to bring the 27-year-old back to England, though perhaps not to the extent that Real did.
It is thought that Scholes will retire for real at the end of this season, plus there’s plenty of speculation, as over the top as it is, regarding the future of Wayne Rooney and the short-term plans of this pair should determine whether United amp up their interest in Modric.
Their immediate concern, however, is beating managerless Reading at the weekend, which they’re currently 13/5 to do with a three-goal handicap applied.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date