Man United & Chelsea in straight battle for Colombian

Manchester United and Chelsea are in a two-horse race for Juan Cuadrado, with reports from The Metro indicating that Barcelona have pulled out of the running.

The fleet-footed Fiorentina wide-man was rumoured to be the subject of a three-way transfer tussle, but now the Catalans – said to have been the player’s top choice – have distanced themselves from a swoop.

Luis Enrique is thought to be considering Brazilian pair Douglas and Leo of Sao Paulo and Flamengo respectively amid fears that Cuadrado is too pricey after their mega summer spend.

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This would appear to leave United and Chelsea as the two major players in the running for the £36m-rated star.

The Red Devils have been linked with the Colombian for much of the summer, but their hopes have recently taken a blow as the Londoners’ interest surfaced.

Stamford Bridge, unlike Old Trafford, will play host to Champions League football next term, which is rumoured to be a big factor for the winger.

Although Jose Mourinho has insisted that his transfer business is done he has the funds in place to conclude a move after selling a host of big players since January, and the club’s relationship with La Viola is understood to be healthy following Marko Marin’s loan switch to Florence.

United are ready to offer Cuadrado guaranteed first-team action as their right wing-back in Louis van Gaal’s 3-4-1-2 formation.


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