Benfica set £28m asking price for United-linked star - report

Manchester United-linked midfielder Nicolas Gaitan is now available for £28 million.

Manchester United-linked midfielder Nicolas Gaitan has signed a new deal at Portuguese outfit Benfica with a new release clause set at £28 million.

The Argentine international was heavily linked with a move last summer as a number of Premier League clubs such as United, Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool were monitoring his situation.

Benfica managed to fend off potential interest by refusing to sell the player for a penny less than his previous £36 million release clause.

That figure, however, no longer exists as Sky Sports Italia reported last week that Guitan’s new four-year contract extension has seen his release clause drop to a more reasonable price.

According to a report in The Mirror, the current financial difficulties at the Estadio da Luz has subsequently forced Benfica into reviewing their situation, and they are said to be ready to listen to offers for the former Boca Juniors star.

“Now Benfica are ready to accept around £28m for Gaitan," states the report. "The cash-strapped Portuguese club are aware that United are interested in the playmaker and are hoping that their reduced valuation of Gaitan will prompt a move in January.”

The 26-year-old is renowned as an exciting attacking midfielder who, despite being left-footed, likes to play on the right flank and cut in to wreak havoc.

The Red Devils heavily invested in a number of attacking positions over the summer, but the right flank could be deemed as a position which could be improved.

The more central Ander Herrera has been played out there on occasions this season as Ecuadorian international Antonio Valencia has struggled to convince boss Louis van Gaal.

Gaitan has played a total of 106 Portuguese league matches since joining Benfica in 2010, scoring 18 goals in the process.

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