Manchester United are always linked with a plethora of players in, and in-between each transfer window, but Raphael Varane’s name is one that keeps coming back.
United were linked with a move for the Frenchman back in his days playing for French side Lens, but he ultimately joined Jose Mourinho’s Real Madrid after being wooed by then club ambassador, and now manager, Zinedine Zidane.
Mourinho was, and still is, a big fan of the 24-year-old, who fits his ideal profile of a centre-back, being physically big and strong, while also being good on the ball.
Varane has established himself as a first choice defender for Los Blancos this season, but reports in Spain suggest that the defender could be put up for sale in the summer in what has been a disastrous season for the reigning La Liga champions
According to Spanish publication Diario Gol, club president Florentino Perez has decided he wants to offload a number of players in order to generate funds to strengthen in the summer. One of those players is Varane, who could be available for around £50m. Manchester United were close to signing the defender in 2016, but he decided to stay and work with new boss Zinedine Zidane.
Speaking at the time, Varane said: “I had a special relationship with Mourinho.
“With [Carlo] Ancelotti, I played less but he did extraordinary things at Real Madrid and that is what counts.
“I wanted to know if the club was in line with my project, that I would play.
“The president and the coach told me they were going in my direction. I put my head down and I worked hard during the pre-season training.”
Real Madrid, who suffered a shock defeat to Espanyol on Tuesday night, currently sit 14 points behind their most bitter rivals and current La Liga leaders Barcelona, who also have a game in hand. They also crashed out of the Copa del Rey at the quarter final stages, leaving the Champions League their only hope of a trophy this season.
Both Manchester United and Real Madrid have also been linked with Spurs defender Toby Alderweireld.