The extracts on this page are taken from selected national newspapers. The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of Manchester United.
Barca hold crisis talks with Thiago
Barcelona will hold last-ditch talks with Thiago Alcantara to try and persuade the Spain midfielder to turn down a move to Manchester United. The Premier League champions have agreed personal terms of £5.5million-a-year with Thiago and his father, former Brazil World Cup winner Mazinho, and are confident of wrapping up a £17m transfer. Barca still hope to persuade the 22-year-old that he will be a ‘leader’ at the club for years to come but he remains unconvinced after struggling to secure a first-team place. Thiago has gone on holiday leaving his father and representatives to hold talks with the Spanish champions, and they are expected to tell Barcelona that he wants to quit the Nou Camp for Old Trafford. United have even gone to the effort of gathering character references on the player and are aware that both Manchester City and Bayern Munich could make a counter offer. They are understood to have no interest in Napoli striker Edinson Cavani but are continuing to monitor Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract standoff with Real Madrid.
The Express quotes Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti, who has played down reports in Spain that suggest Cristiano Ronaldo will meet with United officials in the next three days. The former Chelsea boss said: “Cristiano is a great player and I’m honoured to work with him. I’ve coached Zidane, Ronaldo [the Brazilian one] and Ronaldinho, and I’m honoured to add Cristiano to the list.” The same paper claims Benfica defender Ezequiel Garay has been house hunting in Manchester.
Elsewhere, many of today’s papers mention Rene Meulensteen’s Reds departure, while others comment on former United striker Carlos Tevez joining Juventus from Man City.