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Man Utd give up on Joao Neves pursuit to concentrate on Manuel Ugarte

Manchester United are prepared to focus on signing Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Manuel Ugarte after giving up on their pursuit of Benfica’s Joao Neves, according to O Jogo (page 6).

Neves has been on the Red Devils’ radar for the past few months and it was recently reported that the club made a second offer of £59 million which was turned down by Benfica.

O Jogo now claim that Paris Saint-Germain have moved into pole position to land the Portuguese wonderkid and they have made a substantial bid of £76m including bonuses.

United have decided against matching the transfer proposal of Les Parisiens. They are prepared to give up on the youngster in order to concentrate on landing Ugarte instead.

It is added that this could further fuel PSG’s appetite to sign Neves, considering the additional funds they would receive from Ugarte’s possible switch to Old Trafford this summer.

United’s transfer decision could be budget oriented

Neves is one of the most sought-after young midfielders in European football. He is brilliant with the ball at his feet and does not shy away from making challenges in midfield.

At just 19, he has shown plenty of maturity from the number six role. He would be a fantastic acquisition for United, but the hierarchy may not want to pay above the odds.

The teenage sensation has made huge strides over the past year with his boyhood club, but he may also need time to adapt to the higher intensity of the Premier League.

The same goes for Ugarte, but the Uruguayan has four years of extra experience than Neves. He has already proved himself at one of the best clubs in European football.

United have made an opening bid of £38m plus add-ons for Ugarte, who was described as a ‘tireless‘ midfielder shortly after his arrival from Sporting Lisbon last summer.

In our view, United’s decision could be budget oriented. Signing a more experienced Ugarte for around £38m makes more sense for the hierarchy with limited transfer funds.