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Man Utd ready to accelerate pursuit of Barcelona star Memphis Depay

Manchester United are accelerating their pursuit of Barcelona attacker Memphis Depay following the termination of Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract, according to Sport.

The Red Devils recently parted ways with Ronaldo by mutual consent and it has been reported that they have saved wages of around £16 million in the process.

The club should now pursue a low-cost replacement in January and Sport claim that they are already looking to close a deal for Depay from Barcelona.

Depay was previously with United between 2015 and 2017 where he had a forgettable stint. He was sold permanently to French club Lyon for £15 million.

The Netherlands international has since developed leaps and bounds and United are now open to reuniting with him when the transfer window reopens.

Depay will enter the final six months of his contract in January. Barcelona are willing to allow him leave on a free transfer, provided he does not require a pay-off.

Depay could command significant signing-on fee

Juventus tried to sign Depay on a free transfer last summer, but the deal fell through due to his wage demands. Barcelona were also not prepared to compensate for his exit.

United have the financial power to meet his current wages of £175,000-a-week, but the Dutchman may also want a significant signing-on fee if Barcelona don’t hand him a pay-off.

It remains to be seen whether the hierarchy are willing to match his requirements. A new striker should be targeted by United this winter as they can’t rely on the fitness of Anthony Martial.

Martial has been injured on three separate occasions this campaign. Another setback for the Frenchman could see the club playing with just one specialist centre-forward in Marcus Rashford.

Depay would prove a good signing with his ability to play on the left wing or up front, but he won’t come cheaply. United will need to negotiate a sizeable salary package to convince him.

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