Rumour: Manchester United reach 'verbal agreement' with Benfica over Nicolas Gaitan
Manchester United have reached a ‘verbal agreement’ with Benfica over the permanent transfer of winger Nicolas Gaitan as per reports from The Metro. The 27-year-old winger is set to join the club next week and could potentially make his debut when United travel to Birmingham to face Aston Villa.
The Argentine – who is valued at £21.1m - has been on Manchester United’s radar for a couple of years with even Manchester City, Liverpool, Tottenham and Chelsea known to have shown interest.
Various teams from La Liga including Valencia are known to admire and want Gaitan but reports indicate that he has chosen the 20-time Premier League champions over the rest of them.
Gaitan has reportedly told his club that he wishes to make the move to the Theatre of Dreams after playing his last game in Portugal this Sunday.
The Argentine can adapt to different positions on the field
If the move does go through, it will represent a great deal of business for Louis van Gaal’s men. The Albiceleste midfielder is a supreme talent capable of dazzling irrespective of the opposition. He is quick, has a sharp eye for goal and can run circles around the best of defenders.
With Manchester United confirming the sale of Angel di Maria, to French Champions PSG in a £44m deal, they are willing to invest in Gaitan’s immense talent to replace his outgoing compatriot.
Unlike Angel di Maria who might have struggled out wide at time, or too deep at times, Gaitan is able to adapt to a plethora of positions having been used across the field for Benfica.
A New United again
If Gaitan does sign, it'll be the sixth high-profile signing made by Van Gaal. Gaitan will join fellow newcomers Memphis Depay, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Morgan Schneiderlin, Matteo Darmian and Sergio Romero.
A fairly new Manchester United squad will be on display again next season after their transfers this summer window. Unlike them, however, this Old Trafford outfit has more than enough firepower to challenge for silverwares this season.
On a related note of transfers, United are also on the lookout for defensive reinforcements with Marcos Rojo, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling available as the only senior centre-back options. The likes of Nicolas Otamendi and Juan Jesus have been continuously linked with a move to Old Trafford.
A top striker is also reportedly on the transfer list with Ed Woodward and Van Gaal hoping to sign a truly talismanic finisher before the end of the transfer window. Alexander Lacazette, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Gareth Bale – albeit not an out-and-out striker – are being considered to 'complete' the current Manchester United team.