Serie A ace set to boost Manchester United’s defensive ranks

Manchester United’s search for full-back talent has taken a twist, with the Red Devils reportedly on the brink of signing Torino’s Matteo Darmian.

The Old Trafford club have been linked with Everton’s Seamus Coleman after losing out on Dani Alves and Nathaniel Clyne but reports today suggest a deal for the 25-year-old Italian is imminent.

Darmian was shipped out of AC Milan early in his career after making just four appearances for the senior Rossoneri side but he has since gone on to make a name for himself at Torino, where he was named in the 2013-14 Serie A Team of the Season.

United face stiff competition from European giants Bayern Munich and Barcelona but stole a march on their rivals by moving first with an £8.5m bid.

That bid was rejected but it is understood the club have now had a higher offer of £12.7m accepted and Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzo claims the player already in advanced talks with Old Trafford chiefs.

Darmian has played over 150 games for Torino and has represented the Italian national team on 13 occasions and while he may be little known to United fans he could represent something of a bargain compared the £30m is would supposedly cost to lure Coleman from Goodison Park.

United boss Louis van Gaal has made strengthening his defence the top priority this summer but has been frustrated in his efforts so far.

Real Madrid centre-back Sergio Ramos has reportedly been offered a five-year deal to leave the Bernabeu, while Phil Jones has been tied down to an extended contract.

There is still plenty of work to be done, however, if the Red Devils are to deliver on odds of 1/4 to secure successive top four finishes under the Dutchman.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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James Curtis

After studying for a degree in journalism and gaining his NCTJ, James contributed to a wide range of papers, online publications and broadcasters including the South London Press, Press Association and Sky Sports News before joining the Ladbrokes News team.