Fernando Llorente has reportedly informed Athletic Bilbao that he wants to leave the club during the summer transfer window after rejecting their offer of a new deal.

Spanish newspaper AS has reported that Llorente had a meeting with the board of directors and informed them that he would not be accepting their offer of a new contract and instead wanted to leave the club.

The Spain international has been consistently linked with numerous Premier League clubs and in recent days has been mentioned as a target for both Manchester United and near neighbours Manchester City.

Fernando Llorente
Fernando Llorente has revealed he wants to leave Athletic Bilbao this summer [Reuters]

Both clubs are interested in strengthening their forward line and would certainly have the funds available to make an offer for a striker who has impressed both domestically and on the international stage for Spain.

The report in AS claims that Llorente has a release clause of €36million, but they may be forced to accept less as he only has one year remaining on his contact with Bilbao.

Llorente is actually in a powerful position as if he refuses to sign a contract then Bilbao risk losing him on a free next summer.

The 27-year-old is believed to have told Bilbao that he wants to play Champions League football, something that United would be able to offer. They would also be able to match the wages of €4.5million that Bilbao were offering to the striker.

The powerful forward appears to be reaching his peek and last season reached his highest number of goals as he scored 30 in 53 appearances in all competitions as he helped Bilbao reach the final of the Europa League.

He could well be viewed as the perfect replacement for Dimitar Berbatov who has fallen out of favour with Sir Alex Ferguson and has been told he can look for a new club.

Last season United lost the Premier League title on goal difference and Ferguson will be acutely aware that another prolific striker could be the difference to beating Manchester City to the title this season.