Neymar
Barcelona star Neymar has been linked with a move to Manchester UnitedGetty

Manchester United have received encouragement in their pursuit of Barcelona star Neymar.

The Guardian reports that the Brazil international is open to making a switch to Old Trafford in the ongoing transfer window. Louis van Gaal had earlier admitted that he wanted to add "speed and creativity" to the Red Devils' squad.

Neymar had an impressive 2014/15 season with the Catalan club as they went on to win the La Liga, Copa del Rey and the Champions League. He scored 43 goals and registered seven assists in all competitions last campaign.

United are keen on securing the services of the 23-year-old as the Dutchman looks to bolster his squad before the end of the transfer window. He moved to Camp Nou from Santos in 2013, signing a five-year deal.

The Premier League giants' global appeal and history has appealed to Neymar and he would consider making a switch to United, according to sources close to the player. United had long been interested in signing Pedro from Barcelona.

The Red Devils' chief executive flew to Barcelona to reportedly negotiate a deal with the treble winner for the Spain international, according to the Daily Mail. However, Pedro snubbed United and completed a move to Chelsea.

During Woodward's trip to Barcelona, the United chief executive made an audacious bid to land Neymar. He has three years left on his contract and his desire to join the 20-time English champions have only improved the English club's chances of landing the star forward.

The Guardian also claims it could be a ploy from Neymar to get a lucrative deal from Barcelona in order to continue with his current employers.

Meanwhile, Barcelona sealed a 1-0 victory over Atheltic Bilbao in the first game of the new La Liga season.

Following their latest win, Luis Enrique was questioned about rumours linking Neymar to United. He said, "Talking about Neymar and other clubs doesn't interest me. I don't talk about rumours. I focus on what happens in my team."