United eye up Alves swoop

Manchester United are keeping tabs on Dani Alves’ situation at Barcelona after it emerged manager Pep Guardiola is prepared to dispense with the full back as he prepares to overhaul his squad.

The Daily Mail understands the Catalan boss is determined to rebuild the his side over the summer after seeing their hopes of winning the  La Liga title and the Champions League extinguished in the space of a week. Alves is set to be one of the first high-profile players to be axed after Guardiola grew tired of his lack of defensive discipline in Barca’s new 3-4-3 system and is prepared to let him leave once the season ends.

That has alerted Sir Alex Ferguson who is in the market for a new right sided full-back despite the improved form of Rafael following his comeback from injury. His attention has been turned towards £28 million rated Alves who he tried to sign four years ago when the Brazilian was still at Sevilla.

However it’s doubtful that the Red Devils will spend that amount of money on just one player as he won’t retain any sell on value.  Mega rich Russians Anzhi Makhachkala, who have also been credited with an interest in the 28-year-old, are seen as a more plausible destination by the Barca hierarchy.

Despite being a regular at the Nou Camp a poor performance during the 2-1 defeat against Real Madrid, which effectively handed them the championship, has convinced Guardiola to sell. It’s no secret that the duo share a strained relationship after Alves was blocked from making a publicity appearance for one of his sponsors earlier in the season on his manager order.

Moves for Tottenham’s Gareth Bale, Valencia winger Jordi Alba and Arsenal captain Robin van Persie are all in the pipeline but funds are required before Guardiola can even think about moving ahead with his plans.