Mundo Deportivo claimed earlier this week that Manchester United could launch a surprise deal for Angel di Maria in January.
There could be a very simple explanation for this however, with it emerging he is angling for an improved contract.
The fresh twist emerges in the form of notorious agent Jorge Mendes, who represents clients from Jose Mourinho, Cristiano Ronaldo, and... Bebe.
Spanish broadsheet El Confidencial has written that Mendes is pushing for Di Maria, also his client, to get an improved pay deal.
"The last change in the contract of the Argentine international came in September 2012, but now wants more, as the amount does not seem enough. His good start to the season, including a starting role led him to launch the call for a better contract, a demand that has not come to fruition. The Argentine earns 3.5 million euros and wants more. Looking up a step in the wage distribution."
The Argentine had an excellent start to the season, taking the creative mantle vacated by Mesut Ozil, but a woeful performance in El Clasico has seen him dropped since.
It's a classic move from Jorge Mendes, seeing the improved status of Di Maria at Real Madrid, to demand an increased wage to reflect that.
Having seemingly been rebuffed straight away, he has turned to plan A of his playbook, link the player to Manchester United, as so many of his clients - Ezequiel Garay and Nicolas Gaitan lately, have been.
Suddenly with his status at Madrid in question, with him forced out of the side by Gareth Bale, the plan is looking decidedly dicey.
Di Maria is unlikely to get the huge increase in wages he craves, a slight improvement perhaps, but ironically moving to a new club like Manchester United could be his best bet
United fans would be advised not to buy into it too much. A move is possible, but there are reasons behind the rumours, and it's likely the Red Devils are just seeing their name dragged into contract negotiations as a bargaining chip.
image: © jansolo09