Manchester United have reportedly identified a possible alternative to Sao Paulo midfielder Lucas Moura in River Plate youngster Ezequiel Cirigliano.

Reports today suggest that Manchester United have missed out on signing Brazil international Lucas with the players agent, Wagner Ribiero, revealing that an offer was rejected and that he would be remaining with Sao Paulo.

"They have reached their limit," Ribeiro is quoted as saying in The Telegraph. "Lucas Moura won't leave. He is happy at Sao Paulo. We have to forget this subject. There is no possibility he leaves now.

"Manchester United made an offer which was rejected and they won't make another one as they reached their limit."

Ezequiel Cirigliano
Ezequiel Cirigliano [centre] playing for Argentina Under-20's [Reuters}

Despite seemingly missing out on the highly-rated midfielder, it seems United may already have an alternative in mind. The Daily Mirror is reporting that Cirigliano is now being targeted by Sir Alex Ferguson as he looks to add to his midfield.

The 20-year-old has previously been linked with Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain, however, it appears as though Manchester United could now be leading the race to sign the youngster.

Cirigliano has come through the youth academy at River Plate and begun to force his way into the first team two years ago as he also became a regular for Argentina at Under-20 level.

The midfielder was a member of the Argentina side that played at last year's FIFA Under-20 World Cup where he scored against North Korea and helped his country reach the quarter-finals of the competition.

The Mirror is reporting that he would be a far cheaper alternative to Lucas as they suggest that he would be available for as little as £5million.

Manchester United are clearly seeking further options in midfield as it appears they are still trying to identify a long-term replacement for Paul Scholes.