Manchester United reignite Joao Palhinha interest after Sporting Lisbon lower £33m asking price


Manchester United have renewed their interest in Sporting Lisbon defensive midfielder Joao Palhinha after the Portuguese club lowered their £33m asking price for the 26-year-old.

The Red Devils are keen on signing an orthodox defensive midfielder this summer, having deployed Scott McTominay and Fred in the role so far this term.

Both midfielders have had success in a more advanced, box-to-box role under Ralf Rangnick and the German feels United need a traditional sitting midfielder, regardless of who takes charge of the side next season.

United have a long-term interest in Palhinha but they were put off by Sporting’s £33m asking price last summer, particularly as the club had spent big on Jadon SanchoRaphael Varane and Cristiano Ronaldo already.

But Portuguese outlet Record report that United have revived their interest after Sporting intimated that they would accept a deal closer to around £25m.

United have therefore sent scouts to watch the midfielder more often this term, with Palhinha scouted eight times by the Red Devils already this season.

It’s Palhinha’s preference to move to the Premier League but United are likely to face competition from Tottenham and Wolves for his signature.

Much could depend on where United finish this season and the club’s Champions League hopes took a major dent with a 0-0 draw against Wolves on Saturday.