Manchester United ready to fight Inter Milan for midfield ace Martinez
25 October 2011
Manchester United are ready to go head-to-head with Inter Milan for Athletic Bilbao star Javi Martinez.
The versatile midfielder, 23, has been attracting interest from across Europe following a series of impressive displays in La Liga.
But sources in Spain have now revealed that United and Serie A side Inter Milan are now leading the chase for his signature.
United manager Sir Alex Ferguson is understood to be in the market for a central midfielder following the retirement of Paul Scholes and has been repeatedly linked with Inter playmaker Wesley Sneijder.
But it has now been claimed that Ferguson wants to turn his attentions to Martinez, who is more defensively able than Sneijder and available for considerably less than the Holland international - who is rated at around £40m.
It has been reported that United and Inter reckon they could snare Martinez for around £17m when the transfer window reopens in January.
But Bilbao are loathed to lose the 2010 World Cup winner until next summer and are adamant he will not be sold for less than £26m.
United said is ready to bid £18m for the Spanish U-21 star who also been targeted by Liverpool and Chelski. The lanky midfielder is highly recommended by United scout Martin Ferguson. Martinez who had seven cap with Spain was the captain for Spain under-21 side that lifted the European Championship 2011 in Denmark. The team also featured United's De Gea. To put in his resume he was also a member of the Spanish squad that won the 2010 World Cup.
So he maybe could fill Paul Scholes place.