EXCLUSIVE | By Manchester correspondent Alex Stevens
Football Insider sources have learned that United have held negotiations with the Dutchman’s representatives as they press ahead with a deal to sign him this summer.
United are working on having an early agreement with PSV and Depay in place as they aim to prevent a repeat of the previous two summers, when deals with possible signings either fell through or were not processed until the Premier League season was already in full swing.
Depay, who has an option in his contract that allows him to leave at the end of the season, is rated in the £20m bracket by PSV on the back of a fine season for his club in which he has scored 20 goals in 31 matches in all competitions.
United have made an early move for the 21-year-old and are increasingly confident of beating off interest in the wide forward from other Premier League big-hitters, including Liverpool and Tottenham.
Old Trafford officials have met Depay’s representatives in recent weeks and presented a contract offer to the player and told him how Louis van Gaal would plan to utilise him next season.
The Holland international, who has won 13 caps for his country, was given his debut for the national team by van Gaal in 2013 and was shortlisted for the Best Young Player award in last summer’s World Cup. He proved an effective impact substitute for Van Gaal, coming off the bench to score against Australia and Chile.
PSV director Toon Gerbrands said earlier this month that Spurs were willing to pay €20m (£15m) for Depay last summer but “we decided to keep hold of him”. However, Gerbrands admitted that Depay’s contract states he “has the option to leave after this season”.
Depay’s goals for PSV have been integral to the club establishing a 12-point lead in the Eredivisie ahead of second-placed Ajax.