Manchester United are exploring the possibility of signing Darwin Nunez from Benfica, Talksport reported last week.
But hopes of lowering the potential fee by including a player in a swap deal have yet to tempt the Portuguese club.
The Mirror reported over the weekend that Andreas Pereira was to be offered as a counterweight in a move.
Pereira’s proposed switch to Flamengo had recently fallen through, where he remains on loan until the end of the month.
Swap for Nunez falls flat
Benfica outlet Terceiro Anel reports that United wanted to offer around €75m (£64m), plus a player, to try and tempt Benfica into a deal.
But the exchange of more player money for Nunez is not moving forward, at present, because Benfica do not like the players offered.
The report states that despite Benfica’s desire to strengthen the midfielder, Pereira is not interested in the Portuguese club.
Neither the Benfica board nor new manager Roger Schmidt are attracted to the option of signing Pereira.
The outlet reports that Anthony Martial’s name has also come up in the talks – but neither Benfica nor Martial himself are said to be keen.
Nunez is a sought-after player after scoring 34 goals in all competitions last season. The Athletic United report are among the favorites for his signature.
The Independent claim that Liverpool are considering a move as they take into account the potential departure of Sadio Mane.
Attempting Benfica in a swap move could have given United an edge in negotiations, but it looks like those options are a clear ‘no go’, and there may be no other way around. . Maybe Eric Bailly could be thrown in.
It is at least encouraging that United are considering different options. It’s likely to take a direct cash offer to land the striker, though that’s mixed with installments and add-ons. And the hunt to try and find clubs to take on Pereira and Martial continues.