Betfair have installed Manchester United as new favourites to sign Aston Villa Christian Benteke, according to the Express.
The betting site have now made the Red Devils 2/1 favourites to secure the Belgian hitman and clearly believe that Louis van Gaal will be successful in his ambition to recruit the powerful striker.
As noted by the Daily Star, Liverpool had previously been considered favourites for the 24-year-old, but the Dutch coach’s desire to bolster his striking options may lead to the Merseysiders missing out on one of their key transfer targets.
The Daily Star confirm that Betfair have made Liverpool second favourites for the forward—with odds of 9/2—while the Belgian’s other suitors, Atletico Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur, are both 10/1.
Finally, Chelsea are 12/1 to sign the centre-forward, with Benteke’s international teammate Eden Hazard recently pleading with Jose Mourinho to bring the striker to Stamford Bridge this summer [via the Express].
The same source notes that the player has a £32.5 million release clause, and with Benteke’s agent having recently confirmed that his client would not be extending his current deal at Villa Park, the player would surely be open to a move to one of the Premier League’s giants.
United have already signed Memphis Depay this summer—with the Dutch international signing from PSV Eindhoven [ManUtd.com]—but have lost Radamel Falcao, who returned to AS Monaco following the end of his loan deal via the club’s official website.
They may also need to replace Robin van Persie, with the former Arsenal striker linked with a move to Juventus, Lazio and Galatasaray [via the Daily Star].
Despite struggling with injuries, Benteke demonstrated his class this season with 13 goals in 26 Premier League starts and came into his own towards the season’s end, scoring some vital goals as Tim Sherwood’s side escaped relegation.