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Manchester United's pursuit of Maddison & Grealish called into question

13:27 GMT+3 15/02/2020
Jack Grealish, James Maddison
Former Red Devil Paul Parker has aired his concerns over two players being heavily linked with moves to Old Trafford this summer

Manchester United may struggle to sign James Maddison from Leicester due to his price tag, according to Paul Parker, who has also warned his old club that a move for Aston Villa's Jack Grealish could be a risky one.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been tipped to continue a squad overhaul at Old Trafford this summer, having already signed five new players during his first full year at the helm.

Daniel James, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire were all acquired last summer, with United focusing on bringing in young, homegrown talent capable of contributing in both the short and long-term.

The Red Devils altered their approach slightly in January, completing a €55 million (£46m/$60m) deal for Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes, while also signing Odion Ighalo on loan from Shanghai Shenhua.

They are expected to turn their attention back towards English prospects when the market reopens, however, with Maddison and Grealish reportedly topping their list of potential targets.

United were forced to shell out a record fee of £80 million ($104m) for Maguire because Leicester played hard-ball, and Parker sees the same scenario arising if they continue to chase Maddison.

The ex-Red Devils defender still sees Maddison as a better option than Grealish though, as he told Metro Sport on behalf of the Racing Post: "Manchester United need to sign proven players but the one who has proven himself [Maddison] is not going to leave Leicester.

"He’s not going to move unless Leicester get offered ridiculous money, like they were for [Harry] Maguire.

"Leicester couldn’t believe their luck with that one. So you go with Maddison [over Grealish] but can they get a deal?

"Grealish for me is still potential, there’s been a lot of talk, and he hasn’t really done it on a consistent basis."

Parker went on to suggest that United are also still in desperate need of another centre-forward, while also expressing his belief that Maguire could probably do with a new partner in the heart of the defence.

"You have to look long-term," he said. "They definitely need a centre forward. Ighalo has come in but that’s a temporary move.

"You would probably look at a centre back as well, a quality centre back for a reasonable price."

United are due back in Premier League action on Monday night, with a crucial trip to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea on the cards.

Solskjaer's men must win to lessen the six-point gap between themselves and the Blues, who currently occupy the final Champions League spot.

"It’s a big game for both teams, they both need to come out and be positive," Parker added. "Nobody can predict what will happen because both teams are lacking in confidence and desperate to win.

"Neither team can afford to lose the game. These points could make a massive difference at the end of the season."