Sir Alex Ferguson sends top spy to scout Old Trafford target.
EXCLUSIVE: United step up De Marcos chase
Manchester United are stepping up their bid to sign Athletic Bilbao’s £26million-rated midfield dynamo Oscar de Marcos.
United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is sending his top spy to watch the powerful prospect in the first leg of Bilbao’s Europa League semi-final against Sporting Lisbon in Portugal on Thursday.
De Marcos has shot to the top of United’s wish list – as the Mirror revealed earlier this month – and Fergie wants to get a complete dossier on the 22-year-old before he starts trying to wrestle the star away from the Spanish club.
United view De Marcos as ideal for their midfield, which has only fired this season since the return of Paul Scholes.
The Bilbao star was outstanding against them as Marcelo Bielsa’s side triumphed in the Europa League’s last 16.
De Marcos has a fixed fee written into his contract and United will have to go to that figure to get him, so Ferguson wants to be absolutely sure before asking the Glazer family to spend.
However as United are unlikely to need to be recruiting many players this summer, they will put aside a chunk of money to improve the midfield – and De Marcos is their current first choice there.
SOURCE: Daily Mirror
Oscar de Marcos is just one of many Athletic Bilbao talents that Marcelo Bielsa will struggle to keep hold of this summer and a player who’s stock has risen this term thanks to a consistent series of displays, most notably in Europa League action.
The 22 year old adaptable Spaniard was something of a bit part player at San Mames before this term and he may well sneak into Vicente del Bosque’s Euro 2012 squad though he is still to win a full senior cap, such is the strength in depth in the Spanish national team.
De Marcos is most effective in the centre of midfield where his rangy runs and excellent distributor must have interested Sir Alex Ferguson though the former Alaves man can also play up front or out wide.
There are a number of top talents at the La Liga club who are drawing interest from Europe’s elite, among them youngster Iker Muniain, box to box midfielder Javi Martinez and forward Fernando Llorente.
Ferguson is keen on beefing up his midfield and given that Darren Fletcher is out for an indeterminate period of time with illness De Marcos could be a useful addition. Though Michael Carrick has had an excellent season, Anderson has struggled and youngster Tom Cleverley has also had some niggling injuries.
However the £26m price-tag may scare off a Man United bid.
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