Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has informed coach Zinedine Zidane that it will be ‘almost impossible’ to sign Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba this summer.
The World Cup winner has been linked with a move to the Santiago Bernabeu for the majority of his second spell at United – which began after completing an £89m switch from Juventus.
There have been moments when the 26-year-old’s departure has looked inevitable, particularly during his public dispute with former manager Jose Mourinho.
However, Marca report that Perez has resigned himself to the fact that Pogba will remain with the Red Devils in 2019/20 campaign – regardless of the player’s wishes.
The Spaniard held a meeting with Zidane and Real’s general director Jose Angel Sanchez at a Mont hotel in early July in which the trio discussed how the La Liga side would conduct themselves for the remainder of the summer transfer window.
During the conference, Perez revealed that United are adamant that they will not part company with Pogba and, as a result, any pursuit of the Frenchman would be futile.
Real fell at the last-16 stage in the Champions League courtesy of a 4-1 second-leg hammering at the hands of Ajax, finished a distant third in La Liga and suffered the ignominy of a 3-0 Copa del Rey humbling against Barcelona in front of their own supporters.
Madrid believe that Pogba will try to force an Old Trafford exit, though they will not make any requests for him to do, so given the available alternatives.
Tottenham Hotspur playmaker Christian Eriksen is another target as the Dane enters the final year of his Spurs contract, as is Donny van de Beek, who played a key role in Ajax’s defeat of the 13-time European champions in March.