Spanish football expert Guillem Balague believes Manchester United are trying to sign Valencia’s Nicolas Otamendi for a lower fee than his €50m release clause.
Otamendia has enjoyed a fine season with Valencia and is currently considered to be one of the best centre-backs in La Liga.
Man United were said to be close to agreeing a deal for him in the winter transfer window but the transfer fell through at the last minute.
Louis van Gaal has revived his interest in the Argentine this summer but is unwilling to pay the €50m it would require to release him from his contract at the Mestalla. Balague insisted Otamendi wants to join United and that the club are pushing for a deal.
Speaking about the situation, Balague said: “Manchester United is not the only club interested in Otamendi, but it is most certainly the club he wants most”
“Nico is brave, clever, jumps like [Roberto] Ayala. Valencia are lying about the clause, they will not add a tax on for the deal.”
“Manchester United are actually trying to currently reduce the €50m price. That is why they are leaking that they are not interested.
“Very rarely a player in Otamendi’s situation will stay at the club. I think he will end up in the Premier League.”
United were strongly linked with a move for Borussia Dortmund’s Mats Hummels but the interest has cooled since the player revealed his intention to stay in Germany.
It appears the club have moved on to Otamendi but he should in no way be considered a downgrade. A rock at the back, the 27-year-old would go a long way to providing United the defensive solidarity they have been crying out for this year.