Real Madrid have reportedly agreed to pay a world record fee to sign Cristiano Ronaldo and have dispatched a doctor to examine his hernia problem.
Widespread reports in Spain say the club's new president Florentino Perez has sanctioned a deal that will dwarf the £56m paid to AC Milan for Kaka.
It has long been said that there is a pre-contract agreement to sign Manchester United star Ronaldo - understood by Sportsmail to be set at £75m - while reports in Spain suggest the fee could rise as high as £82.7m.
The contract, which United have previously denied the existence of, would have to be executed before June 30, with Madrid paying a £26m penalty if they broke the terms.
Perez's predecessor Ramon Calderon has persistently hinted that Ronaldo will arrive at the Bernabeu because of work he had already done on the deal last summer.
Perez is understood to be unhappy at such a high fee and has reportedly been in talks with United chief executive David Gill over the last few days in an attempt to renegotiate the deal.
But the Barclays Premier League champions have refused to budge other than agreeing to take the payments spread over five years, leaving Perez to reluctantly sanction the transfer rather pay £26m and have no player.
El Mundo Deportivo says that a representative of the club and a doctor have been sent to meet the 24-year-old in Los Angeles, where he is recuperating after injury forced him out of the Portugal squad.
His prospective new employers want to examine the suspected hernia to see if it needs surgery, which may rule him out of the start of the season, but they could move quickly to finalise the deal if they are satisfied. He would receive about £200,000 a week on a similar deal to Kaka.
While Calderon angered United boss Sir Alex Ferguson by courting Ronaldo in public, Perez has not met the same resistance despite constantly stating in interviews in recent days that he was determined to sign the Portugal international.
Perez, 62, is said to have a much better relationship wit the Old Trafford hierarchy, dating back to a time when he chaired the now disbanded G-14 collection of Europe's elite football clubs.
Bernabeu insiders insist the spending will not stop with a player they have spent two years chasing. There is an estimated £260m budget, with deals still in the offing for Bayern Munich star Franck Ribery, Liverpool's Xabi Alonso and plus Valencia trio David Villa, David Silva and Raul Albiol.
He has also spoken warmly of Inter Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, though it appears the club's interest in Wigan winger Antonio Valencia - which predates Perez's appointment - may have cooled.