Lazio chief: 'Indecent offer' needed for Manchester United target Hernanes

Lazio president Claudio Lotito has stated his trepidation at selling his star playmaker.

Brazilian midfielder Hernanes has been subject to protracted negotiations for a new contract at the Stadio Olimpico - a circumstance that has seen him heavily linked with a Premier League switch.

It was previously understood that Aquile chief Lotito – never known for having a wealth of patience – had grown disillusioned at talks never reaching a conclusion and was ready to sell the 28-year-old for as little as €17m.

And the Italian media claimed late last week that the player’s agent, Joseph Lee, had flown to England to open up dialogue with Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur.

The Manchester Evening News have now claimed it’s only a matter of time before the Red Devils table an official offer – but Lotito has spoken out on the subject in a manner unfavourable to the Brazilian’s suitors.

“A renewal? We have an agreement with his agent with whom there is a great deal of respect,” he told Sky Italia.

“There are no qualms with the player and he has the right attitude to continue here.

“I rate him at €17 million? I wouldn’t sell him for that, and I haven’t put him up for sale.

“We don’t want to lose him, but everyone is subject to offers.

“It would take an indecent proposal to consider it; certainly not €17 million.”

Hernanes’ value to the Lazio cause was only just on display on Sunday – the Brazilian came off the bench against Udinese to lead the Biancocelesti from 1-0 down to a 3-2 victory, striking the winner himself with a brilliant effort from distance.

The attacking midfielder has been the heartbeat of the capital outfit since arriving from his native land in August 2010 – racking up 40 goals and 17 assits for his current employers.

And Lotito doesn’t appear as amenable to a sale this January as has been characterised – with the Aquile’s agreement with Lee a revelation at this point.

Tottenham and United will be wary of the dangers of spending vast sums in the winter transfer window and could indeed be priced out as the Aquile supremo requires well more than €17m to flog off his prize asset.

Perhaps the duo will be back in during the summer for the highly-rated playmaker – as if Lotito’s words are to be taken at face value, Hernanes will likely be going nowhere at present.

image: © batrax

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch