Manchester United are reportedly hoping to sign FC Porto’s Brazilian left-back Alex Telles in a cut price £12 million deal this summer with the player into his final year of his current contract at the Portuguese club. The Guardian has reported that the £18 million fee being asked for is not something that United would pay for the player, seeing the fee for the 27-year-old as too high with the Old Trafford club hoping to use the clubs financial difficulties to conclude the deal positively.
It is reported that Telles is eager to make the switch to the Old Trafford club and play in the Premier League this season but United will have just over a week to get the deal completed as the summer transfer window will close on the 5 October. Porto are said to be holding firm on their valuation of the player with United playing hardball to get the deal done. With the ongoing financial problems for the Portuguese club, they may need to accept United’s offer rather than risk losing the player for free.
From January, Telles, 27, will be able to sign a pre-contract agreement with a foreign club, signing for the club from the 1 July 2021. If that happens, there is no guarantee that United would wait to sign the player as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to sign a left-back this summer to cover for Luke Shaw, who has an poor injury record and Brandon Williams, who needs to find more experience and could learn from a player like Telles. United are said to have one or two other left-backs on their list this summer.
Solskjaer’s side were linked with Ajax left-back Nicolas Tagliafico earlier this week, which may or may not be a player that the club are interested in signing if they do not manage to conclude a deal for Telles this summer. The Old Trafford club were also linked with Sergio Reguilon, who signed for Tottenham Hotspur after United would not agree to a buyback clause for the player, which would have turned the deal into a glorified loan spell for the player, which was something United were not interested in.
Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano, who is a well-respected journalist when it comes to transfers has suggested that the £12 million fee that United might be trying to pay could just be hearsay as he has stated that the fee could rise to £22 million with Porto seeking to get €25 million for Telles this summer as they want to invest in other areas of their squad. Romano stated the following on his Twitter account;
“Talks continue between Manchester United and Porto for Alex Telles. Player side still convinced that an agreement between Porto and #MUFC can be reached around €25m (£22m). Negotiations on. There’s also another option on the list as LB for Man Utd if Telles deal will collapse.”
Last season, Telles made a total of 49 appearances for Porto, scoring 13 goals and 12 assists in all competitions with Porto winning the Primeira Liga and the Taça de Portugal. So far this season, Telles has made just one appearance this season, scoring two goals and one assist in the 3-1 victory over Sporting Braga last weekend. Porto face Boavista in the Primeira Liga this weekend, the club that former United attacking midfielder Angel Gomes has been loaned to for the season. It will be interesting to see if Telles plays in this fixture, which could tell how close a deal actually is.
Written by John Walker