By Wayne Veysey
Man United are hopeful of agreeing a deal for Newcastle United midfielder Sean Longstaff as they intensify their summer overhaul, Football Insider can reveal.
The Premier League giants have identified the Newcastle academy product, 21, as one of their key summer targets as they look to recruit talented British youngsters who can be developed into established Premier League stars.
A United source has told Football Insider the club are ready to table an opening bid for Longstaff of around £18million this week in an attempt to make him their second summer signing.
The 20-times title winners would look to add performance-related add-ons to the initial fee in an attempt to sweeten the deal for Newcastle.
The north-east giants are braced for their top-flight rivals to make a formal move for Longstaff after speculation in recent weeks they are keen to add him to Ole-Gunnar Solskjaer’s team for next season.
Longstaff broke into the Newcastle first team last season and made an excellent impression in eight consecutive league starts before a knee injury in March ruled him out for the rest of the campaign.
The central midfielder only has 13 senior appearances under his belt for his boyhood club, but has done enough to convince United he is a genuine star-in-the-making.
They are now ready to test the Magpies’ resolve to hang on to one of the fans’ favourites at a time when manager Rafael Benitez’s future is shrouded in major doubt.
The Spaniard is out of contract at the end of the month and has yet to agree an extension.
In other Man United news, it can be REVEALED that star club goalkeeper has agreed the terms of a long-term deal with a big pay hike.