MANCHESTER UNITED are reportedly preparing a £68million offer in their attempt to lure Marcos Llorente away from Atletico Madrid.
The Red Devils are known to be huge admirers of the 26-year-old, having first targeted the midfielder in January 2020.
Llorente has been instrumental for Diego Simeone’s men this season with Atletico on the brink of winning their first LaLiga title since 2014.
The ex-Real Madrid ace – who won the 2018 Champions League with Los Blancos – has chipped in with 13 goals and 12 assists in 43 games in all competitions this term.
His fine form hasn’t went unnoticed, with it claimed in March that United were set to turn their interest into a formal offer.
And now the Mirror have stated the the Europa League finalists are ready to make a £68m bid to secure Llorente’s services.
United could double his wages to £180,000-a-week as they look to entice him to make the move to Old Trafford.
Such is Atletico’s concern that Llorente could be tempted into leaving, AS have reported that the Spanish side are poised to offer him a new contract.
His current deal doesn’t expire until 2024, but the club’s CEO Miguel Angel Gil is said to have met with the player’s agent several times in recent weeks about extending his stay.
Should Atletico fail to convince the ex-Alavas loanee to remain, it has been rumoured that potential suitors will have to fork out his mammoth £103m release clause.
According to Marca, Atletico will issue a hands-off warning and have no intention of listening to any offers for their key man.
They add the only way United have a chance of landing his signature is by forking out his whopping buy-out clause.
As well as Llorente, United have also been linked with a shock move for Arsenal’s Ainsley Maitland-Niles.
The England international is currently on loan at West Brom where he has been deployed in his preferred central midfield role.
But it is understood that United, like the Gunners, view him as a right-back.
And United are believed to be keen on signing Maitland-Niles to provide cover for Aaron Wan-Bissaka.