Mundo Deportivo report that Dembele rejected the chance to join the Manchester outfit at the time as he wishes to succeed at the Camp Nou, with it unclear if there’s been further talks since.
The Times state that Dembele is seen as an alternative to United’s long-standing prime target, Jadon Sancho, with Barcelona willing to part with the winger for £45m – having signed him in a deal worth up to £135.5m from Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2017.
The Times add that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are only willing to sign Dembele on loan, a proposal that could be difficult for the cash-strapped Barcelona to accept, due to their vastly trimmed down squad.
Dembele has struggled massively at Barcelona, the tricky attacker has suffered with constant injury troubles, which have led to inconsistent displays when Dembele has actually hit the pitch.
Solskjaer’s side could certainly do with another winger, especially considering that Anthony Martial has been transitioned into a centre-forward over the last two seasons.
This led to lightning-fast Dan James playing a bigger role than many would’ve expected last season, whilst also paving the way for wonderkid Mason Greenwood to establish himself as an important player.
Greenwood and Marcus Rashford usually start on the wings now, but the Red Devils don’t have quality alternatives to the duo, with James the prime option after now fringe attacking midfielders Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard.
With Luis Suarez forced out of Barcelona recently, it seemed to be shaping up for Dembele to play a key role for Ronald Koeman’s side – as long as the talent can remain fit – but this interest throws a spanner in the works.