Manchester United are understood to have dropped their interest in defensive trio Ezequiel Garay, Nicolas Otamendi and John Stones, although they remain keen on bringing Real Madrid centre-back Sergio Ramos to the club.
Louis van Gaal has targeted a defender this season following the occasionally unconvincing showings of the likes of Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans last season. The third of these players—Northern Irishman Evans—has also been linked with a move away from Old Trafford, with Premier League sides Arsenal, West Bromwich Albion and Everton understood to be keen on the centre-back [Express].
While Ramos has long looked like one of van Gaal’s primary summer targets [Daily Mail], the player’s anticipated move from Real Madrid to Old Trafford has been thrown into doubt following the Merengues’ decision to offer the World Cup winning star the club captaincy [Mirror].
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According to the Manchester Evening News, while the Dutch coach still wants the Spaniard, he is not interested in Garay, Otamendi [both talkSPORT] or Stones [Daily Mail]—all of whom have been linked to Old Trafford in recent weeks.
This could be good news for Arsenal and Chelsea, with the Gunners understood to be keen on Argentine centre-back Garay [Metro], and the Pensioners in hot pursuit of Everton’s England international stopper [The Guardian].