In Focus: Man United lead Bernardo Silva race

According to Canal+, Manchester United are in pole position to sign AS Monaco attacker Bernardo Silva in this summer’s transfer window.

What’s the story?

After a disappointing 2016-17 Premier League campaign, which saw the club finish in sixth position, Man United are once again expected to splash the cash this summer.

Much of their transfer business is said to depend on whether they can secure a return to the Champions League, which will indeed occur if they beat Ajax in the final of the Europa League in Sweden on Wednesday night.

Silva, after helping Monaco win Ligue 1, has been linked with the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona in recent weeks, but according to Canal+, Man United are confident that they have won the race to sign the talented attacker this summer.

It is understood that Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho has already held informal discussions with representatives of Silva, whilst the Portuguese international prefers a move to the Premier League over either Real Madrid or Barcelona.

What would Silva bring to United?

Silva, 22, scored eight goals and provided nine assists as he played a key role in Monaco taking the Ligue 1 title away from Paris Saint-Germain this season.

The playmaker also netted twice in the Champions League as Monaco reached the semi-finals, and his ability to operate in a number of forward positions would certainly make him an attractive proposition for Mourinho.

Silva, who is valued at £21m by transfermarkt.co.uk, joined Monaco from Benfica on a permanent deal in January 2015 after an initial loan spell with the Ligue 1 outfit, and his development over the last 12 months has increased the interest in his services.

Man United have lacked the firepower to challenge for the Premier League title this season, but there have also been question marks over the creation in the team, which is an area that Silva would certainly boost if he arrived at Old Trafford.

Real Madrid and Barcelona are not exactly two teams that admit defeat easily when it comes to signing players on their shortlist, but Man United have the financial power to out-bid both Spanish clubs in this summer’s transfer window.

Mourinho cannot afford to make mistakes ahead of what is a vital 2017-18 campaign, and Silva could be the first of at least two new attackers to move to Old Trafford this summer.