Manchester United have received a boost in their pursuit for Angel Di Maria after it emerged Paris Saint-Germain could not afford to buy the Real Madrid winger this summer.
United have been monitoring Di Maria all summer but it was Ligue 1 champions PSG who were thought to be the front runners to sign the Argentine winger.
But according to reports in France, the pendulum may have swung back towards United after it was claimed PSG would not be able to stump up €60m (£47.7m) having already splashed €49.5m (£39m) on Chelsea and Brazil defender David Luiz.
Laurent Blanc's side has also been hampered by Uefa sanctions after it was found to be in breach of Financial Fair Play.
PSG is allowed only a 21-man Champions League squad instead of 25, consisting of at least five home-grown players.
The only way the French title holders would be able to countenance a swoop for 26-year-old Di Maria is if they were able to offload his compatriot Ezequiel Lavezzi, who earns €6.5m (£5.1m) net a year at PSG, to Liverpool.
But club president Nasser al-Khelaïfi has ruled out selling any of his Parisian stars and at the unveiling of Luiz said: "We discussed Angel di Maria with Real Madrid. He was very expensive and we have stopped discussions."
Al-Khelaïfi had been exploring the option of taking Di Maria to the French capital on a one-year loan for an estimated €10m (£7.9m) with an option to then make the move permanent for an extra €50m (£39.7m).
However, with Madrid having already spent €130m (£103m) on James Rodriguez, Toni Kroos and Keylor Navas, president Florentino Perez favoured the cash paid upfront, opening the door for United to hijack the move.
Old Trafford boss Louis van Gaal has been deliberately coy on specific transfer targets but has admitted his defence is in need of strengthening.
However, the Dutchman is also believed to be looking to add attacking flair to United's line-up and it is thought they are willing to offer Di Maria £120,000-a-week in the hope of luring him to the Premier League.
Another player van Gaal remains keen on is Fiorentina winger Juan Cuadrado, who has also attracted the interest of Barcelona.