The rumour mill is churning out reams of copy on potential Manchester United targets, understandably so considering the Red Devils’ £130m-plus splurge last summer, but the black and gold boys at bwin aren’t wholly convinced by the latest couple of links.
Mario Mandzukic has been named by no less than eight British news sources as a potential United signing, after being left out of Diego Simeone’s starting line up for 11 of Atletico Madrid’s last 17 fixtures of the 2014/15 campaign.
However, the original story seems to have emanated from the Daily Mail, who believe Mandzukic has been ‘offered’ to the 13-time Premier League champions and mention, seemingly as an afterthought, that former boss David Moyes was keen on the Croatia regular during his short spell in the Old Trafford hotseat.
The layers aren’t convinced, with bwin seeing Liverpool as the more likely summer destination for Mandzukic at 3/1, ahead of United at 7/2, while the 29-year-old crossing town to Real Madrid gets an 8/1 quote and, oddly, Newcastle are rated a viable option at 10s.
Another Man Utd whisper coming down the wire concerns Paris Saint-Germain right-back Gregory van der Wiel, after long-time reported Red Devils and Les Parisiens target Dani Alves finally signed a new contract at Barcelona.
Van der Wiel making the switch to Old Trafford by 02/09/15 gets a 3/1 quote from bwin, yet seems more unlikely than a Mandzukic move, considering Louis van Gaal didn’t even pick the player for his 30-man provisional Netherlands squad ahead of World Cup 2014.
Furthermore, after failing to pick up Alves, it’s tough to imagine Laurent Blanc parting with a defender who started 22 times en route to PSG retaining their Ligue 1 title last term, and all ten of their Champions League fixtures.
One man looking a little closer to an Old Trafford move is Borussia Dortmund midfielder Ilkay Gundogan, with Barcelona reportedly no longer interested in adding the 24-year-old to their treble-winning squad.
Gundogan, who will probably win his tenth Germany cap against USA in Cologne, has told BvB he won’t sign a contract extension with just a year left to run on his current deal, leaving some of Europe’s biggest names scrambling for his paw print.
United are 6/4 with bwin to snag the former Nurnberg playmaker’s services by the start of September, with Arsenal still considered in the running at 5/1 and Real Madrid priced up at 7s.