Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti has made it clear today that star winger Angel di Maria wishes to leave the club.
The news should ignite hope to the Manchester United camp as they are one of the reportedly interested parties to land the Argentine.
Paris Saint Germain also want to sign him, but the French club need to offload some of their star players in order to balance the books and comply with FFP restrictions.
In reality, there is only one horse race here.
Manchester United badly need reinforcement and they have only 10 days at hand to change their vicissitudes.
Expectations are always huge at any big club. But when you’re at Manchester United, the very definition of the word ‘pressure’ takes a different dimension.
The pressure here is different now from what it used to be. Under Sir Alex Ferguson the pressure was mainly to exceed their own potentials, to challenge their own limits and overcome them.
But things have changed. Dramatically. Drastically.
Post Ferguson era was always going to be difficult, but nobody expected it would be this difficult. There is a genuine sense of fear attached with this pressure. The fear of decline, The fear of going into wilderness. The fear of failure.
The club is no where ready to mount a challenge for top four spot, leave alone fighting for the title. At least three to four world class players are needed and Di Maria is certainly one of them.
The new manager Louis van Gaal has expressed his desire to sign the Argentine. The player wants to leave which makes the matter easier for him, while he has funds at his disposal.
No one exactly knows what sort of price Real Madrid are demanding for him, but it should be in the region of €60-70m.
We have seen, two players been sold this summer at over €70m, so it is highly justifiable that Real Madrid are demanding such price for the player, who single handedly won them their 10th European title last season.
Obviously the situation is difficult for Manchester United as they cannot offer Champions League football to the Argentine.
But, that’s not the biggest issue here. Di Maria doesn’t have enough options and unless he he is hellbent on playing for a club that participate in Europe, logic fails as to why he would refuse the chance to he one of the biggest clubs in the world.
So far, Manchester United have completed three major signings. Out of which two had been already lined up by previous manager David Moyes.
This is one hell of a pressure for Ed Woodward now.
If he fails to sign Di Maria from here on, he simply doesn’t deserve to continue his job at Old Trafford.
Players like Di Maria could lift the mood of the entire place, which even the arrival of Louis van Gaal had failed to do so.
Manchester United need world class players. Manchester United need to arrest their decline. Manchester United need Angel di Maria.
It’s now or never for Manchester United.