Manchester United: The Thiago Alcantra transfer saga
Manchester United are rumoured to be in the driving seat for the transfer signing of Spanish U21 international Thiago Alcantara. The midfielder, a graduate of the legendary La Masia academy of Barcelona, has been frustrated by less than ideal first team appearances, as fellow countrymen Xavi, Iniesta and Cesc Fabregas appear to block the youngster’s path to stardom at the Catalan club.
The 22-year-old originally had a staggering £77 million release clause inserted into his contract, but this has plummeted to £15.4 million after he failed to feature in at least 60 per cent of Barca's games last season. Such a cut-price move would be ideal for the Red Devils, who, if reports are to be believed, have already agreed a £5.5 milllion-a-year deal with the youngster and his father, the Brazilian World Cup 1994 winner Manzinho, who travelled to Manchester personally to speak to officials at the Old Trafford club.
Thiago is by all means a gifted youngster, the evidence being his recent form at the U21 European Championship. He was sensational and was named the player of the tournament, even scoring a hat-trick in the final, where Spain emerged victorious against the Italians.
Such a signing could potentially provide United a much needed relief in a department where they’ve been under pressure recently, as their midfield have lacked a creative spark as of late. With Scholes retiring, and Anderson’s form always a concern, the only remaining midfielder with experience is Michael Carrick. The addition of a quality Spaniard to this midfield might be just what United need for next season’s title push under new manager David Moyes.
Calling all Manchester United fans: What would the addition of Thiago Alcantra bring to your midfield? Is he the kind of player you would like to see at Old Trafford? Could Thiago be the next big thing in the Premier League? Whatever your views, we'd love to hear from you.