By Kieran Maguire

7th Mar, 2021 | 12:59pm

Maguire moots player-plus-cash Man United deal after Martinez/Skriniar £43m reveal

The Premier League owes £1.5billion in transfer fees and could kick-start a financial collapse in football – but Manchester United will be shielded from the worst. 

That is according to finance guru and Football Insider columnist Kieran Maguire, speaking exclusively after Corriere dello Sport revealed Inter Milan are in £43million debt to United after missing a bonus payment for Romelu Lukaku.

Corriere dello Sport report that United are interested in taking a player – either Lauturo Martinez or Milan Skriniar – in exchange for writing off the debt.

Lukaku made the switch to the San Siro in 2019 for £74m but missed an installment, triggering a clause which activated the £43m debt.

But Maguire poured cold water on hopes of a deal being struck with Inter for either Skriniar or Martinez.

However, United fans will be relieved to hear that they are likely to be shielded from the worst of football’s transfer debt crisis, according to Maguire.

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He told Football Insider correspondent Adam Williams: “Unless Manchester United really want the player, I would consider a player deal unlikely because they are doing Inter a favour by accepting a player instead of cash.

“I think it’s unlikely unless the recruitment team feel they can get someone to fill a position that needs dealing with.

“Unfortunately, we are likely to see more teams miss payments. I don’t think it will happen to any Premier League teams. But Premier League teams between them owe £1.5billion in outstanding instalments on transfers.

“In Europe, a lot of money is owed to Premier League teams but not much money is coming in.

“The Premier League has the benefits of this amazing TV deal which to a certain extent helps to insulate clubs from the impact of Covid. The TV deals in Europe is worth far less. The deal in France has completely collapsed.

“My fear is that it could become viral. A club being unable to pay another team will mean the receiving team won’t be able to pay another team for one of their outstanding transfers. That way, you end up with a contagion of unpaid fees.”

The Red Devils posted their quarterly financial results on Thursday, demonstrating that they are in robust finanical health amid the pandemic.

They made a profit of £63.9m despite losing £110m from the absence of fans this season.

In other news, Football Insider can reveal that Manchester United have dropped their interest in Aston Villa’s John McGinn.