Report: Barcelona agree contract with Manchester United target

Barcelona V Madrid

Sergio Busquets has signed a new Barcelona contract, despite interest from Manchester United.

The Daily Express has reported on interest from the Red Devils concerning the Spanish midfielder, with head coach Louis van Gaal said to be very keen on bringing him to Old Trafford.

However, it now appears as if any potential move for the 26-year-old will have to be put to one side, with the official Barcelona website confirming that Busquets has signed a contract extension that has long been in the pipeline.

His previous deal ran through until the summer of 2018, but the new deal ties him to Camp Nou until the end of the following season, with the option for a further year should the club wish to make use of it. There is no confirmation of whether the new deal has increased the buy-out clause present in the previous deal, but with that clause valued at €150 million - as per ESPN - it is unlikely any club would be tempted to pay it.

What does this mean for Manchester United?

Busquets is just one of many names linked with United in recent years as a fix for the evident midfield problems that continue to hold the club back. The Mirror reports on interest in Nigel de Jong and Kevin Strootman, although the latter’s injury troubles make any deal unlikely.

With deals for Busquets and Strootman seemingly off the cards, it would come as no surprise to see the Red Devils make a formal approach for de Jong in the summer, although, at 30-years-old, one would not consider the Dutch international to be a long-term fix for the ongoing problems in the centre of the park. 

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