Wilfried Zaha (Courtesy: Crystal Palace)
Manchester United are close to a £12m move for Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha Crystal Palace

Manchester United are close to securing a £12m move for Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha, according to the Daily Mail.

The 20-year-old Ivory Coast-born youngster is expected to be loaned back to Championship side Palace for the rest of the season. The Selhurst Park club initially valued the England international at £20m but are now likely to accept a lower initial fee with a number of add-ons and incentives.

Zaha has made 25 appearances for Palace so far this season, with five goals and four assists to his name. United's Premier League rivals, Tottenham and Arsenal were also credited with an interest in Zaha but the north London pair seem to have withdrawn from the race.

United presently have Ashley Young, Antonio Valencia and Nani to provide attacking width. However, with the Independent reporting the potential loan of England youngster Danny Welbeck to Reading and the impending retirement of 39-year-old Welsh international Ryan Giggs, Ferguson likely considers Zaha as part of the next generation of United stars.

Norman Whiteside on Liverpool v Manchester United

Meanwhile, former United player Norman Whiteside has stressed the fixture between Liverpool and Manchester United is the biggest game of the season and takes precedence over the Manchester derby.

Sir Alex Ferguson's side host Liverpool on Sunday looking for a league double over Brendan Rodgers' men, having beaten them 2-1 at Anfield earlier in the season.

"It's the first date you look for when the fixture list comes out. Not just as players but supporters too. I still think it's the biggest game of the season. I know City are coming close to it but they still have a long way to go," Whiteside explained, adding, "If you're looking at United and Liverpool with 19 and 18 league titles, then City are a long way off that and well behind as far as history is concerned."

It's always tough against Liverpool," the former United striker added. "I think all the form books go out of the window. It's going to be about whoever is up for it on the day and I just hope we are.

"Van Persie has done brilliantly and United have just got this knack about scoring at the right time. Even I was doubting it would happen last weekend but, hopefully, we should be okay now for qualifying for the next round of the FA Cup."