Guillem Balague told Revista de la Liga that Manchester United are in the hunt for a left-footed centre-back and if they are willing to active Athletic Bilbao's Aymeric Laporte’s £32 million release clause then he would sign with the Premier League club.
When asked on the Sky Sports-based TV programme whether there was any update on the potential deals between United and Raphael Varane, Nicolas Otamendi or Laporte, Balague said: ‘’If Manchester United have €42 million [£32 million] and they don’t care how much it costs to have a left-footed centre back, which is one of the things they want to have.
''Athletic don’t know anything about Manchester United going in, but Laporte does and he is happy to go. If they come in with that money, so it’s going to be a tense week in Bilbao for sure.’’
According to the Manchester Evening News, the 20-year-old defender has been linked with a move to Old Trafford since before the January transfer window opened and although there is just a matter of days left before it slams shut, it seems their pursuit of the youngster remains on course.
Nevertheless, only last week, the French defender told FourFourTwo in an exclusive interview that he had no immediate desire to leave the Biscay-based club for England and was pleased with his continued development while playing week in, week out with Bilbao.
If Louis van Gaal is determined to sign the French under-21 international for United then he may have to convince the player that he can continue his development as a player while playing in the Premier League.
Although Balague is convinced the player would join United, it seems, judging by his comments in FourFourTwo, negotiations may not be as straight forward as the Sky Sports panellist is lead to believe.