Manchester United and Arsenal have been encouraged to renew their efforts to sign long-term target Angel Di Maria, with reports in Spain suggesting Real Madrid are considering cutting ties with the versatile midfielder next summer.
Having started 21 La Liga games this season, the 26-year-old is still a pivotal player for manager Carlo Ancelotti but he has reportedly fallen out of favour with Real Madrid officials.
Spanish newspaper Mundo Deportivo reports that Real Madrid chiefs, including President Florentino Perez, want to part with him in the summer due to his at-times difficult attitude.
Di Maria was very close to leaving the Spanish giants during the last transfer window, after he confronted his own fans during a game against Celta by grabbing his crotch in front of them.
Nevertheless, Ancelotti persuaded his bosses to give Di Maria another chance, as he considered him a key member of his starting line-up, especially after Sami Khedira's long-term injury.
Following Gareth Bale's arrival, Ancelotti has used the Argentinian in a deeper role, with Di Maria excelling alongside Luka Modric and Xabi Alonso in Real Madrid's midfield.
But Florentino Perez's strong influence over Real Madrid's transfer plans may precipitate his exit from the Santiago Bernabeu at the end of the season, with both United and Arsenal monitoring the situation.
Arsene Wenger reportedly earmarked Di Maria as one of his main targets last summer, but he instead signed Mesut Ozil because at that time Real Madrid didn't want to release the Argentinian.
United boss David Moyes approached him during last January's transfer window, before Juan Mata's arrival at Old Trafford.
With United preparing a huge overhaul in the summer and with Wenger still looking for a versatile midfielder like Julian Draxler, they may both renew their interest in the Real Madrid star.
The Spanish giants have already earmarked Paul Pogba as Di Maria's replacement and according to reports they would negotiate a deal for around £30m, £5m more than they paid for him in 2010.