European champions Real Madrid have already strengthened their side with the signings of World Cup stars James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos from AS Monaco and Bayern Munich respectively, and they are reportedly looking at bringing in a top class striker as well.
But one man that could be heading in the opposite direction is Angel Di Maria, who has been linked with Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain, among others.
Despite a tremendous season and very good World Cup it would seem that the Argentina international’s chances will be limited this season. With Colombian Rodriguez and German World Cup winner Kroos coming in, it would be fair to assume that they will be given many opportunities to shine. And with Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo also at the club, the signings could end up leaving Di Maria on the sidelines.
Carlo Ancelotti is prepared to allow Di Maria to leave the club, and Madrid have reportedly quoted a price of around £45m to Manchester United. Big spending French side PSG were hit by Financial Fair Play sanctions earlier in the summer, and their power to spend was not helped after they splashed out £40m on Chelsea’s David Luiz. It is believed that they are angling for a loan move with the view to a permanent deal – something that Real are not keen on.
This has left Di Maria frustrated but he is understood to prefer a move to the Parc des Princes over a switch to Old Trafford. United are without European football this season after finishing seventh last year. Although new manager Louis Van Gaal is seen as a big draw to the star names in football, all players would be apprehensive about joining a side with no Champions League football.
However, media speculation would have you believe that Di Maria is willing to join Van Gaal’s revolution. Di Maria has reportedly long been an admirer of Van Gaal and how he operates, and would be open to joining Manchester United.
According to reports, United would not balk at the idea of breaking their transfer record to sign Di Maria, and will get down to business sooner rather than later as Van Gaal continues to rebuild.
But Di Maria would still prefer to move to the French capital and it is reported that a fee has been agreed for a permanent move next summer, with Di Maria going on loan this season. It would be a major blow to United if they yet again fail to sign a world class target.
Gareth Bale and Cesc Fabregas were among their targets last summer and they have been chasing Arturo Vidal along with Di Maria this summer. Vidal has reportedly ruled out a move to the Red Devils but they have not given up on signing him. Likewise with Argentine Di Maria, they will be hoping to capture the Real Madrid man if he doesn’t complete a move to Paris.
For PSG however, it would be a massive coup for them if they sign the winger on loan. Securing a major signing like Di Maria, and staying within the FFP regulations at the same time, would represent a fantastic piece of business, and he would only make PSG stronger.
This particular transfer saga is set to rumble on but could be resolved within the next week. And whoever captures his signature, they will feel like they have made the signing of the summer – so long as he recreates his form from last season.