News, views, and rumours relating to Manchester United in the past 24 hours.
In transfer news, Crystal Palace youngster Wilfried Zaha is set to undergo a medical with Manchester United in the next 48 hours after a £15 million deal was agreed between the two clubs.
It is, however, understood that Zaha will be loaned back to Palace to complete the remainder of the season with the Championship side.
This deal also increases speculation that Nani will depart fro United in the next transfer window, as the Independent reports. We discussed the likelihood of Nani's departure earlier this week.
Out-of-favour striker Federico Macheda looks set to agree a loan move to Bundesliga side Stuttgart where he is expected to play for the remainder of the season.
United youngster Michael Keane has extended his loan deal at Leicester City, where he will remain until the end of the season.
The Sun are reporting that United are ‘ready to make a £10 million summer bid for Victor Wanyama.’
Meanwhile the club have defended their sponsorship strategy in the wake of criticism that their recent deals with Chinese companies Wahaha and China Construction Bank, along with Japanese company Kansai Paint are ‘diluting their brand’ oversees.
Marketing manager Jonathan Rigby explained,
“We don't see that at all. We see an increase in growth in the vibrancy of our brand. In fact we see the opposite. We see a fan base that is growing, we see engagement levels growing, we see viewing figures continuing to grow."
United saw a ‘slight dip’ in revenue last season but remain third in the Deliotte Money League with total revenue of £320.3 million.
In team news, Wayne Rooney has suffered an injury setback while training in Qatar with the rest of the United squad ahead of their FA Cup clash with Fulham this weekend.
Rooney was seen ‘holding his thigh, grimacing and hobbling’ during a training session.
There are also concerns over the fitness of winger Ashley Young who could be out for longer than had originally been expected by manager Sir Alex Ferguson. The Englishman could now be out until next month at the earliest.
United fans will, however, be boosted by the news that Spain captain Iker Casillas is a ‘major doubt’ for United’s Champion’s League clash with Spanish champions Real Madrid next month after the goalkeeper broke a bone in his hand in Real’s cup victory over Valencia on Wednesday.
“I think the criticism is unwarranted,” said the Red Devils’ former number 1.
“From the moment I signed I considered myself the first-choice keeper.”
image: © jamesboyes