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United make "initial contact" with PSG defensive star — reports

Marquinhos is the latest defender to be linked with a move to Old Trafford.

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Add another central defender to the list, folks. He's Brazilian, he plays for PSG ... no, don't worry, it's not David Luiz. Nor is it Thiago Silva. It's the third of the group, Marquinhos, formerly of Corinthians and Roma, who moved to Paris for more than €30m, yet hasn't established himself in the first team.

Today's comes from French website Le 10 Sport, via our good friend Mr G. Translate:

According to our information, a big European club today focuses closely on [Marquinhos'] case: it is Manchester United . The leaders MU indeed actively seeking a central defender on the market for the month of January. Their central axis has failed and Louis Van Gaal has made ​​it a priority.

"Their central axis has failed." A wonderful phrase. Anyway, Marquinhos was assiduously courted by Barcelona all last summer, before eventually agreeing to stay in Paris; since then, despite playing well almost every chance he's had, he's been very much third choice behind his two more established compatriots.

Is the PSG could let go this winter? This seems hard to imagine today. But it can still happen a lot by the end of January, especially if MU decided to move effectively on the offensive. According to some indiscretions, the Manchester club have informed the clan Marquinhos it would continue to follow the player very closely in view of the end of season if PSG never closed any opportunity for this winter.

As for the source, well, French transfer gossip can occasionally be almost English in its spuriousness. But Marquinhos is brilliant, is young, and isn't playing, three things that should be drawing United's attention.