Barcelona's need to cut at least €200 million from their wage bill to accommodate Lionel Messi's new deal will benefit Manchester United. The Red Devils could land a replacement for Paul Pogba, whose future at Old Trafford remains uncertain.

The Catalan club are desperate to conclude talks over Messi's new deal but have been warned that they need to cut down spending in order to complete the La Liga registration process. Barcelona president Joan Laporta is keen to announce the Argentine star's new deal, especially with his contract expiring in two days.

The La Liga giants are ready to offload a number of first-team stars in order to reduce their wage bill but are yet to receive concrete offers for the likes of Philippe Coutinho, Samuel Umtiti and Martin Braithwaite, who are among players made available for transfer.

According to Manchester Evening News, the Red Devils can take advantage of Barcelona's dire need to raise funds and reduce spending and make a move to sign Ilaix Moriba. The Spain youth international made his debut for the first-team this past season, and is highly-rated within the club.

The 18-year-old midfielder made 14 appearances in his breakthrough season, scoring one goal and assisting a further three. Moriba's game has been likened to 2018 World Cup winner Pogba, making him an ideal replacement if the Frenchman were to leave United this summer.

Pogba will enter the final year of his contract with the Premier League giants later this week. He is yet to begin talks over a new deal and has been linked with moves to Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid and former club Juventus.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is keen to retain the services of the French midfielder beyond this summer and United is expected to make him a lucrative offer once he returns from national team duty. United have no intention of letting Pogba run down his current deal and leave for free next summer.

The uncertainty surrounding Pogba's future in Manchester has pointed the club towards Moriba, who has a similar all-round midfield game like the Frenchman. Moreover, the young midfielder will also have just one year remaining on his deal but has a £100 million release clause.

Barcelona's need to raise funds is likely to see them part with more than a few first-team stars, especially those that are in the final year of their deals and unwilling to extend. If Moriba cannot be convinced to sign a new deal, he could be made available for transfer for a value much lower than his £100 million clause.

Ronald Koeman
Ronald Koeman returns to the club he helped win the European Cup in 1992 Josep LAGO/AFP