United could move for Fernando in January, reports suggest. (Reuters)

Manchester United will turn their attention to Porto midfielder Fernando in the January transfer window, reports in Portugal suggest.

The Brazilian midfielder was targeted by Everton as a replacement for Marouane Fellaini during the closing days of the transfer window, but A Bola suggest the Premier League champions are looking to take advantage of the 26-year-old's expiring contract with a cut price bid when the transfer window reopens.

Fernando's current deal with the Portuguese giants expires next summer and rather than see the influential midfielder leave on a free transfer, the club are reportedly willing to listen to offers in the coming months.

Everton had reportedly agreed a fee of £15m to sign the Porto star in August after the club finally opened negotiations with United for Fellaini.

Toffees manager Roberto Martinez even attended a work permit hearing to ensure the Brazilian was allowed to play in the UK ahead of the proposed switch.

The move broke down however, with Fernando himself publishing a picture through his Instagram account declaring his love for Porto and the fans, leaving Everton to pursue and eventually sign James McCarthy from Wigan Athletic.

The report suggests United are now looking to mount another bid to lure Fernando to the Premier League.

Porto are expected to offer the midfielder a new contract before January, but the midfielder's decision is likely to rest on whether the Portuguese champions qualify for the knock out stages of the Champions League.

Serie A giants Inter Milan are also interested in acquiring Fernando's services, A Bola suggest.

Manchester United were unsuccessful in their efforts to address their shortcomings in midfield during the summer after failing with bids for Cesc Fabregas, Ander Herrera and Sami Khedira.

With options already limited, the club have been handed a further headache after Tom Cleverley was forced to withdraw from England's World Cup qualifiers with Montenegro and Poland with a calf injury.

Despite needing surgery on a wrist injury, Fellaini started for Belgium on Friday as they sealed their place at the 2014 World Cup. United are hoping to postpone the midfielder's procedure until December following key Champions League clashes with Bayer Leverkusen and Shakhtar Donetsk.