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Football: Man United mean business

The New Paper | Iain Macintosh | Saturday, Apr 19, 2014

Manchester United's manager David Moyes reacts during their Champions League quarter-final second leg football match against Bayern Munich in Munich, April 9, 2014.

Their season is almost over, but Manchester United are steadily drawing their plans together for the next campaign.

Under Sir Alex Ferguson, transfer rumours rarely leaked out of Carrington.

In this new spirit of glasnost, well-sourced stories are appearing everywhere, telling of United's search for a new generation of champions.

It seems that the club are desperate to make sure that everyone knows they have money to spend. And that they're not afraid to spend it.

At the top of the list is Southampton fullback Luke Shaw, who made his England debut earlier this season.

The Saints are insistent that they won't sell, but it's hard to see how a club that have just made heavy annual losses will resist a bid thought to be in the region of £30 million ($64m).

The only question is whether or not United can match the spending power of Manchester City and Chelsea.

Both of the cash-rich superpowers are interested in Shaw and the resultant wage war will not be pretty.

City and Chelsea have no compunction in spending over the odds for players. Will United dare to match these stakes?

They're certainly prepared to pay big bucks for Toni Kroos, but then the 24-year-old is a German international with a clutch of medals in his back pocket.

He's also the kind of midfielder who could single-handedly reinvigorate the Red Devils.

Kroos is contracted until 2015, but has put all negotiations for a new deal on hold until the end of the season.

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