Manchester United eye Real Madrid's Varane or Leipzig's Upamecano

Manchester United are planning on strengthening their defence in January, and two contrasting reports link them with Raphael Varane from Real Madrid or RB Leipzig's Dayot Upamecano.

The Daily Star believes that, because he's entering the last 18 months of his contract, the fee to sign Varane will now be far lower than when Jose Mourinho tried to lure him to Old Trafford in 2018 as Madrid wanted over €110m. Moreover, Varane is now represented by Base Soccer Agency, with whom United have a productive relationship.

Meanwhile, Bild journalist Christian Falk thinks that United are more likely to attempt to sign long-term target Upamecano, who reportedly has a release clause of €45m which comes into effect this summer.

That fee would appear to be too high for fellow admirers Bayern Munich, which leaves United first in line to attract the 22-year-old and sources told ESPN in August the Frenchman was a top priority, though no deal happened.

***Upamecano is one of the most promising young defenders in Europe and has been able to hold his own in one of the continent’s best leagues. At just 22 he has plenty of time to improve. 

Liverpool need reinforcements due to their injury problems, while United need at least one player in central defence, given Harry Maguire needs a new partner.

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