Premier League champions Manchester United have been offered Argentine international Angel di Maria. The Real Madrid star is one of several names expected to leave the Santiago Bernabeu in the summer, as the Spanish giants plot a summer revamp of the first team.
Spanish newspaper Marca believes Sir Alex Ferguson will have to pay £15m for the 25-year-old, who has had a mixed season so far. The winger has delivered brilliant performances on occasion - two goals and an assist in the 5-1 demolition of Valencia is an example - but has also struggled with consistency. Overall, he has only five goals and four assists from 27 La Liga games; last season he had five goals and 15 assists from 23 games.
The Argentina midfielder is believed to have been on Ferguson's shortlist for some time, with the Express earlier reporting the Scot was considering him to replace Portugal international Nani. The 26-year-old former Sporting Lisbon player has had a similarly unproductive season and continuing disagreements over wages and a contract extension mean he is likely to leave in the summer. There has been talk of Nani being used as bait in the potential return of Cristiano Ronaldo to United but it is believed the Spaniards are more interested in Mexican international Javier Hernandez.
Madrid are also expected to lose coach José Mourinho, with the Special One set to return to Stamford Bridge on July 1, according to The Sun. And the Spaniards have also confirmed Argentina striker Gonzalo Higuain will leave the club, with north London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham said to be keen on his services.
Benitez: Chelsea Better than United
Ex-Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez, whose term at Stamford Bridge is likely to come to a close in a few weeks, believes Chelsea are a better team than Manchester United. The traditional rivals battle it out at Old Trafford on Sunday, with the Blues looking for a top four finish and Champions League football next season.
"They have been more consistent than anyone so they deserve to win the title but are they better than Manchester City? I'm not sure. Are they better than Chelsea? I'm not sure," the Spaniard reasoned.