By Editor Wayne Veysey| Former Evening Standard, Press Association and Goal chief correspondent with 17 years experience of breaking big stories, including exclusives like this

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Manchester United are ready to open talks with Luke Shaw about a new contract, Football Insider sources understand.

The injured left-back’s current £154,000-a-week deal runs 2018 and has the option of a year’s extension.

United do not want to risk a situation where the England international, 20, enters the final two years of his current deal and will move to tie him down further.

A source close to the situation has told Football Insider that United are willing to offer a five-and-a-half-year contract on the same basic £8million-a-year terms as his current package. The total deal they are ready to place on table would be worth £44million.

Shaw signed a four-year deal when he joined United from Southampton in the summer of 2014 for £27million.

He had a mixed debut season at Old Trafford but began the current campaign in excellent form before suffering a horrendous injury during United’s Champions League clash at PSV Eindhoven in September.

Shaw broke his leg in two places and is facing an uphill struggle to play again this season.

However, the United staff, including manager Louis van Gaal, have total faith that the left-back can develop into one of the world’s best left-backs when he returns to full fitness.

Van Gaal, who revealed earlier in the week that Shaw has gone on holiday as he takes a break from his rehabilitation routine, has spoken warmly of the defender this season after being frustrated with his fitness and weight issues in 2014/15.