Manchester United make breakthrough in Di Maria chase

The Argentine winger is keen on a switch to Old Trafford to link up with Louis van Gaal as the Red Devils prepare to launch a bid in excess of €60 million to get their man
Manchester United have made a breakthrough in their pursuit of Angel Di Maria with the Real Madrid star having decided he wants to join Louis van Gaal's side.

The 26-year-old has emerged as the club's top transfer target and United are ready to pay in excess of €60 million to get their man.

An agreement between the Premier League club and Real Madrid was close in July and now Di Maria's desire to link up with Van Gaal should push the deal over the line.

The former Benfica star's Madrid career is all but over, with boss Carlo Ancelotti revealing on Thursday that Di Maria had asked to leave the club having rejected a new deal to prolong his stay at the Bernabeu.

The summer arrivals of James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos have nudged Di Maria down the Los Blancos pecking order, with the Argentine being left of the squad for the Supercopa de Espana defeat to Atletico Madrid on Friday.

Paris Saint-Germain have long been linked with a summer move for Di Maria, although they pulled out of the race to sign the winger at the beginning of August, leaving the path clear for United.

Goal understands that United are still to agree a fee with Madrid although with Di Maria now set on a move to Old Trafford, Van Gaal's side hold the aces in negotiations with the Liga giants.

United kicked off their Premier League campaign in disastrous fashion with a 2-1 home defeat to Swansea City on the opening weekend of the season.

Argentina international defender Marcos Rojo has since arrived in a €20m deal, with Nani heading to Sporting Lisbon on loan as part of the deal, as Van Gaal looks to improve his squad prior to the summer window closing.

But it is the signing of Di Maria, a player of the quality that Van Gaal openly admitted his side are missing, that would make the biggest statement as the Dutch coach looks to get United back on track in the hunt for the top-four and potentially a Premier League title push.