Manchester United's pursuit of ex Arsenal star 'ongoing' but have an £80m back-up

Cesc Fabregas Barcelona

David Moyes is maintaining his push for a Fab Spaniard but, should Rooney be sold and the Cesc bid fail, then an £80m back-up could be revisited…

Manchester United's transfer period may be underwhelming to date but their desire to land Barcelona midfielder Francesc Fabregas, 26, is 'ongoing', according to David Moyes, who could be subject to a fans backlash if attacking bulldog Wayne Rooney is sold to Premier League rivals Chelsea without a marquee signing to replace him. 

The Daily Mail allege that United's admiration for Fabregas is reciprocated by the player himself, that he has told friends in England that he would relish a move to Old Trafford and would thrive on a reunited partnership with former Arsenal team-mate Robin van Persie. 

While the competition for a midfield place is fierce at Camp Nou, Fabregas has managed to improve numerous facets of his playing style since his transfer away from Arsenal. In Spain, he sees more of the football, passes more, has enhanced his accuracy and has become a move proficient tackler. 

However, Barcelona have, thus far, rejected all of United's formal advances.

Whilst United themselves have had to field transfer bids for one of their high-profile players, Wayne Rooney, they too have spurned Chelsea's attempts to land the Englishman for £22 million. Blues boss Jose Mourinho is said to be 'calm' over the situation, while StarSport explain the club remain confident he will represent Chelsea come the end of the summer transfer window.

A situation may emerge where Rooney is sold and Fabregas remains tied to Barcelona. United, though, have a Plan B, according to the Manchester Evening News, who claim Moyes may make an £80m swoop for former forward roamer Cristiano Ronaldo

Carlo Ancelotti's Real Madrid may be more likely to sell Ronaldo should they seal a deal for Gareth Bale and, if United were to fight off Paris St Germain for the Portuguese ace's signature, they would be able to offer him the number 9 squad number he once enjoyed at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu; one of the few vacant squad numbers at United aside from 22, 29 and 30. 

image: © Ines11thiago

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch