Manchester United have reportedly joined Barcelona in the pursuit of in-form AS Monaco playmaker Bernardo Silva and have opened talks with the player’s camp.

The Sun have reported that Manchester United are showing intent to rival Barcelona for AS Monaco superstar Bernardo Silva. The playmaker has recently been linked with Barcelona, who are pondering over a summer move. But, it seems the Red Devils are the favourites to land the player, with Mourinho a big fan of the winger.

Bernardo Silva is another one of the Portuguese gems produced by SL Benfica. His impressive displays for AS Monaco during the loan spell in the 2014-15 campaign compelled the French club to make the deal permanent. And he has only improved by the day at Monaco.

This season, his numbers have been nothing short of exceptional. The 22-year-old has recorded 8 goals and 7 assists thus far in the current campaign, with 5 goals and all of his 7 assists coming in 22 Ligue 1 appearances. Silva is predominantly a right winger, but his ability to play across all three forward positions is a real bonus for managers.

Manchester United have already offloaded Memphis Depay and while they retain a buyback option on the Dutchman, it is unlikely they will exercise it in the immediate or near future. With Martial also pushed to the fringes by Mourinho, United could do with an addition to the wing options come summer.

All roads pointing towards Old Trafford? (Picture Courtesy - AFP/Getty Images)

All roads pointing towards Old Trafford? (Picture Courtesy – AFP/Getty Images)

As per the report, United have already initiated talks with the winger over a summer transfer. The Red Devils are looking for AS Monaco to either give them the first refusal option on the player, which will enable them to be in the know in case any team does put an offer on the table for the 22-year-old’s services.

Or, they are looking to gain priority over other clubs until a certain date. Both the clauses will enable United to gain an upper hand over other suitors. As far as competition goes, Barcelona seem the only one prominently linked with the winger up until now.

The player is likely to cost as much as £70 million as per the report, a fee Manchester United could be prepared to shelve out if Jose Mourinho marks the winger as a priority summer target.

The Catalans sent technical director Robert Fernandez to monitor the player’s progress and performance, and are looking to move for the winger in the summer. But, United could play spoilsport by earning an advantage over Barcelona in the pursuit of the 22-year-old superstar.

Mourinho’s presence at Old Trafford and his admiration for Bernardo Silva could prove decisive in bringing the Portuguese international over to Old Trafford. Mourinho and Silva share the same agent in Jorge Mendes, who could prove to be the key in deciding Bernardo Silva’s future destination, if and when he is allowed to and decides to move.

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