Neymar is open to moving to Manchester United from Barcelona, though there is a recognition the transfer is unlikely to occur before the current window closes.
United are attempting to land the Brazilian before 1 September but there is a long-term strategy to pursue him, with the club believing the transfer may be more likely next summer.
Neymar has three years left on his contract. He is an integral member of the Barcelona team that won the Champions League, La Liga and Copa del Rey treble last season. Yet United are clear they could prise him from the Spanish club. The 23-year-old would consider joining, according to sources close to the forward. He is attracted by the size and history of United and the chance to play in the Premier League.
Last Monday Ed Woodward, the executive vice-chairman, was in Barcelona. However, while it was reported this was to try to close a deal for Pedro, who eventually signed for Chelsea, it is understood he was there to continue the audacious bid to land Neymar.
While the forward’s current terms expire in 2018, his consideration of a transfer from the all-conquering Barca side to United may be a ploy to extract the most lucrative new deal from the Catalan club. This is a factor the United hierarchy will be aware of.