Long-term Manchester United target Renato Sanches expects to stay at Bayern Munich next season – but says he will not be discouraged if his club decide to cash in on him this summer.

Sanches was strongly linked with a move to Old Trafford in 2016 with Jose Mourinho later lamenting the club's failure to sign the Portugal international. The Portuguese coach arrived at Old Trafford in May that year to replace Louis van Gaal at the helm, three weeks after the 19-year-old completed his move to the Bundesliga giants. "I arrived [at Manchester United] late," Mourinho said. "I signed in May, we started talking a week before, but completely out of the process. If I had arrived earlier, I'd fight for him."

Sanches' first season in German football saw him limited to just 25 appearances in all competitions with the midfielder later admitting he had "expected more" from his first season playing under Carlo Ancelotti.

The arrivals of Corentin Tolisso from Lyon and Sebastian Rudy from Hoffenheim means there will still be plenty of competition for Sanches next season too. A worrying report from Kicker suggesting Ancelotti is not convinced the youngster can make the grade. On the other hand, they suggest Mourinho is still a fan, with Bayern prepared to let him go if they can recoup the initial €35m (£30.6m, $39m) they paid Benfica last year.

Sanches has returned to Portugal following his country's elimination from the Under-21 European Championship in Poland with his club future soon to be addressed. But given the choice, the powerful midfielder would like to remain at the Allianz Arena.

Renato Sanches
Sanches is back in Portugal following his country's elimination from the Under-21 European Championship. Getty

"Of course Bayern Munich is a great club and I really enjoy being there. In principle, I will stay there," he was quoted as saying by Mais Futebol.

"But if I do not stay at Bayern I will not be discouraged either. I will continue working as usual. Of course I need to play more, playing more I have more confidence. Let's see what it gives."

United are in the market for another midfielder and have also been closely linked with a move for Monaco midfielder Fabinho, although IBTimes UK understands the club are not currently close to agreeing a deal with the French side.

Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Eric Dier and Chelsea's Nemanja Matic have also been linked with moves to Manchester.