Reports this morning claim Manchester United are prepared to spend up to £100million to sign Cesc Fabregas and Gareth Bale.
There is no doubt the Barcelona and Tottenham players would give David Moyes the much-needed spark that could realistically propel them to the top of the European tree once more. And yet there is considerable doubt over whether the club are prepared to spend so much money, regardless of what the papers say.
Banding such figures around is easy to do but harder to justify. And for all chief executive Ed Woodward’s claims that money is there for a “stellar signing”, securing two in one summer may be stretching the realms of possibility.
This comes after Barcelona vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu ruled out any move for Fabregas, calling him “non-transferable”.
Add to that reports the Spaniard has told friends he will only return to England if it is to play for Arsenal, and any United deal seems impossible.
And yet the reports continue, with Moyes said to be confident he can bring Fabregas to Old Trafford.
Speaking in Australia yesterday, the United manager said, “Signing a midfielder was one area where we thought we could possibly add to the squad.”
And potentially speaking directly to Fabregas, he added, “If you’re a player and you’re brought up to play football, and you look out of the window and you see Old Trafford, if you’ve got any ambitions about being a footballer, and you’re a top end one, I think you’ll want to play for Manchester United.”
As a call-to-arms for any potential signings it was a good one. And yet with every passing day where a transfer is not complete, United fans may begin to wonder if there will be any new faces at all this summer.
Although if the Spanish press are to be believed, one is already in the bag: in the shape of Ezequiel Garay.
The Benfica defender has long been linked with United, and Spanish newspaper El Confidencial has included 50% of his fee in Real Madrid’s summer finances.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side are due half of any transfer fee for the Argentinian centre-back, and reports are already including €10million of a proposed €20million move to United.
Whether this is a case of the Spanish press jumping the gun, or knowing something we don’t will be revealed in due course.
image: © jansolo09