Manchester United turn to 45m Aguero to fill Ronaldo void
Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson will return to his desk at 8am tomorrow at the club's Carrington training ground refreshed from his three weeks' holiday in the south of France and begin the process of replacing Cristiano Ronaldo. First, he will intensify negotiations for £45million Atletico Madrid playmaker Sergio 'Kun' Aguero and then complete the £14m signing of Wigan's Luis Antonio Valencia. For tomorrow morning, £80m will be deposited in United's bank accounts as Real Madrid transfer the full amount of the fee due for Portugal winger Ronaldo. In a highly unusual move, Real sources have indicated that they could secure Ronaldo only if they paid the money immediately and in one instalment. Ferguson will also have to replace Carlos Tevez, who is expected to confirm his move to Manchester City this week, and it looks increasingly likely that the United boss will turn once again to the Latin market to fill the gaps. Negotiations for Ecuadorian Valencia are approaching a conclusion, which will provide the wide player to fill one aspect of Ronaldo's game. But it is the Argentinian Aguero who is likely to provide the missing magic to United's line-up. Despite the fact that Ferguson is keen to sign Lyon striker Karim Benzema, United have been told that the 21-year-old will remain in France for one more season. United will be back to bid for him next summer or sooner if the position of Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas changes. Even then, they may find themselves trumped by Real, who have Zinedine Zidane working as a sporting director and who is using his influence to guide the player to the Bernabeu. With Franck Ribery likewise set on a move to Spain, it is 21-year-old Aguero who currently heads Ferguson's list. Chelsea, frustrated in their efforts to sign Kaka, David Villa and Ribery, are also monitoring the player. Aguero, who is engaged to Maradona's daughter Giannina, certainly ticks the box in terms of star quality, but he may not be the only player making the journey from La Liga to Manchester. Samuel Eto'o has begun negotiations with Manchester City in earnest, representing a significant step for Mark Hughes, who has already secured Roque Santa Cruz and Gareth Barry. Barcelona have long been desperate to offload Eto'o, whose contract expires next summer and who is likely to be absent throughout January to play for Cameroon in the Cup of African Nations. Barcelona want the money to pursue Villa, who has made it clear that he will remain in Spain next season. While Ferguson returns, Arsene Wenger will be relaxing on his holiday having secured his main signing of the summer, centre-half Thomas Vermaelen from Ajax. Wenger is not expected to make a further move in the transfer market until later next month, dependent on whether AC Milan formalise their £25m interest in Emmanuel Adebayor. Arsenal have a striker lined up should Adebayor leave, while significant bids would also be accepted for Emmanuel Eboue and Gael Clichy. It is Robin van Persie who will occupy Wenger's thoughts most, though. The Arsenal boss hopes the Dutchman will sign a new five-year deal early next month.
Related Manchester United News