Man Utd learn how much Manuel Ugarte will cost them as INEOS make star a priority

Manchester United are keeping tabs on Manuel Ugarte (Image: GETTY)

Manchester United will reportedly have to stump up the majority of the £51million Paris Saint-Germain paid Sporting Lisbon in exchange for Manuel Ugarte last summer if they are to prise the defensive midfielder away from France. The Red Devils are yet to complete their first signing of the INEOS era but have been linked with a host of stars in recent weeks.

Ugarte made 37 appearances for PSG last season and helped his side win the Ligue 1 title ahead of Monaco.

But he fell out of favour towards the end of the season and didn’t even make it onto the pitch in either leg of the Champions League semi-finals as PSG were dumped out by Borussia Dortmund.

According to the Daily Mail, United see a defensive midfielder as one of their priority positions and are interested in Ugarte. The 23-year-old is an option to replace Casemiro if the Brazilian swaps Old Trafford for Saudi Arabia.

And PSG will consider offers for the Uruguay international as long as they can recoup the majority of the transfer fee they originally paid for him.

United may face competition for the player’s signature as there is interest in him from clubs in Italy and Germany. And at least one other team in the Premier League are also chasing the ace, who still has four years remaining on his current deal.

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The Red Devils could be set for a summer midfield clearout as minority owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe looks to stamp his mark on the club, with the futures of Casemiro, Christian Eriksen, Donny van de Beek and Hannibal Mejbri far from certain.

And United would only be able to sign Ugarte on a permanent deal, with transfer guru Fabrizio Romano reporting in April that PSG have no intention of accepting loan proposals for the player.

But the 13-time Premier League champions could struggle to convince Ugarte to embrace a new challenge, with the player explaining in May: “Next season still at PSG? I hope so, I’d love to stay here. We will see what’s going to happen.”

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Manchester United midfielder Casemiro has been tipped to leave Old Trafford (Image: GETTY)

United are set to bring the curtain up on the new Premier League season when they host Fulham on Friday, August 16.

And they will do so under Erik ten Hag after Ratcliffe and his fellow club chiefs opted to keep the manager at the helm following a review of the campaign.

Ten Hag has won the Carabao Cup and FA Cup since taking charge in the north west and will be desperate to bring in new faces before the season gets underway to ensure he can compete for more trophies next term.