Manchester United are now clear favorites to sign Willian from Chelsea after Barcelona snapped up Malcolm.
The Spanish champions gazumped Roma at the 11th hour to complete the signing of the Brazilian winger for a fee of £37million.
Barcelona made their move at the last minute after being put off by Chelsea’s £70m valuation of their player, according to the Spanish newspaper Sport.
The 30-year-old could, of course, remain at Stamford Bridge under new boss Maurizio Sarri having struggled under the previous incumbent Antonio Conte.
But United are still looking to strengthen their squad having been quiet in the transfer market so far this summer.
Manager Jose Mourinho cut an unhappy figure at his press conference on Tuesday when asked about his side’s title prospects.
When the question about his squad and challenging next season was put to him at a press conference in Los Angeles, Mourinho replied: “I don’t answer to your question.”
Earlier on Tuesday, the Portuguese had been quoted in an interview with ESPN as saying, when asked how many new signings he would like: “I would get two more players.”
He also said: “One thing is what I would like. Another thing is what is going to happen.”
United, who face AC Milan in the third match of their United States pre-season tour on Wednesday, currently have a number of players on post-World Cup breaks.
Only Brazil international Fred has arrived as a player ready to slot into the United first team.
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