CHARLOTTE, NC — Laurent Blanc has held nothing back about his desire to sign Manchester United winger Angel Di Maria.
With news that the Argentinian missed his flight to the United States as he was meant to rejoin the Red Devils squad, Blanc has zipped the lips completely shut.
“There is always going to be chatter and always going to be talk about these things,” Blanc said through a translator in Charlotte after PSG’s friendly loss to Chelsea. “As you know, we are currently looking to add an attacking player, but whether it is Di Maria or not I cannot say.”
A few of the English journalists pressed Blanc hard on the possibility of the transfer, but he would not relent. “Nothing is official, so until that time I cannot say.”
Normally this would not be newsworthy, but throughout this summer Blanc has been incredibly outspoken about his desire to ink Di Maria to a deal. Just two weeks ago, Blanc confirmed interest in Di Maria, telling French paper L’Equipe, “To strengthen this team we must target guys who are at big clubs and who are not easy to pry away. That’s hardest for PSG. Di Maria, he’s good. We have more freedom, but it remains a difficult project for us because we’re not alone in wanting him. When you see the financial power of the English clubs, they are attacking everyone. Competition is very, very tough. Don’t forget, Manchester United paid a fortune to sign him. For us to work effectively, we have to think of other solutions. We must be proactive.”
All this questioning Saturday night was prompted by news that Di Maria, who Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal confirmed would be on his way to the United States to rejoin the Red Devils squad, missed his flight. Van Gaal said he was unsure why Di Maria did not get on the plane.
This all has the feeling of a pot slowly boiling, and Manchester United could be on the verge of losing one of its best players.