Man Utd target Raphael Varane ‘ready to leave’ Real Madrid as Red Devils eye transfer

Man Utd: Solskjaer's Cavani wish amid talk over future

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Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane is keen to leave the Spanish club this summer in search of a new challenge, according to reports. The 27-year-old has been heavily linked with a summer move to Manchester United, who are on the lookout for a new centre-back to line up alongside skipper Harry Maguire.

Varane has featured heavily for Real under Zinedine Zidane this season, making 36 appearances in all competitions.

United have been tracking the Frenchman’s progress for a number of years and harbour a long-standing interest in his services.

It remains to be seen whether Los Blancos will allow their man to seek pastures new a year ahead of schedule.

The club faces the dilemma of being forced to cash in on Varane during the upcoming transfer window to avoid losing him for nothing next summer.

Negotiations over a new deal were reported to have started last month, but it seems as though a premature exit could soon be on the cards.

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The defender is unwilling to consider the prospect of agreeing fresh terms and is eager to call time on his career in the Spanish capital before the start of next season, according to the Daily Mail.

The report states that United have received ‘encouragement’ that Varane is ready to leave, suggesting a move for his signature could be possible in the coming months.

Howeveer, they are expected to face stiff competition from French champions Paris Saint-Germain, who are also keen on mounting an approach.

Real have slapped a £60million price tag on the World Cup winner but the Red Devils are said to be optimistic about their chances of driving down his transfer fee.

The 13-time Champions League winners are in desperate need of additional funds to bankroll a summer rebuild amid the financial effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Real boss Zidane is a huge admirer of Varane and suggested earlier this year that he would do everything in his power to keep the Lille native within the club’s ranks.

“I don’t want a Madrid without Varane,” Zidane told reporters.

“He’s a young player, he’s been here for eight years, he’s doing fine. There are many things that come out [in the press]. He didn’t say anything to me.

“He’s at the best club in the world and he knows it. He’s won a lot of things.”

United are also expected to be working with a restricted budget of around £80m, with player sales of their own likely to be on the horizon.

The club are keeping tabs on a number of additional defensive targets but Varane is said to be at the top of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s wish list.

RB Leipzig youngster Ibrahima Konate, who is being heavily courted by Liverpool, has also been mentioned in connection with United alongside the likes of Brighton and Hove Albion’s Ben White and Pau Torres of Villarreal.

A top-class centre-back and a new striker are understood to be United’s overwhelming priorities, with departures expected at the back and in attack ahead of next season.

Out-of-favour defender Eric Bailly could be on his way out of Old Trafford this summer amid claims that he will reject the club’s offer of a new contract.

Meanwhile, Phil Jones, who is yet to make a Premier League appearance this season, has long been linked with a move to Newcastle United.

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