Manchester United are reportedly nearing a deal to sign Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez, with the financial impact of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic forcing the La Liga side to cut their asking price.
Niguez has long been of interest to the Red Devils and Daily Star Sport understands that a deal for the Spaniard to replace him is closer than ever.
United are planning for life without Paul Pogba and view Niguez as an ideal replacement.
Now, Spanish outlet Todo Fichajes are reporting that the deal is ‘practically closed’, with COVID-19 forcing Atletico to accept a bid lower than the player’s release clause.
Niguez has a €150m (£132m) release clause in his current deal, which is not due to expire until the summer of 2026, but they are said to have been forced to agree a much lower price of €80m (£70m).
United legend Rio Ferdinand recently gave his verdict on the potential signing of Niguez, saying: “He’s another one, what a player. I’ve been harping on about Saul Niguez for a few years now.
“I think he’s a major player. Composed, calm, great left foot, lovely conductor, he can score goals, tactically he’s very aware. You can see Simeone, he gets his teams really well set up and he’s in the middle orchestrating and dictating things.
“Saul Niguez is huge and it’s come out in the papers this week that Man Utd are interested in him, but we’ll have to wait and see. Man Utd are linked to everyone.”