London: Manchester United announced on Friday that they had agreed to sign Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro in a reported deal worth up to £60million ($70million).
United manager Eric ten Hag has been desperate to sign the defensive midfielder since taking charge at Old Trafford, and has finally signed on after failing to sign Barcelona’s Frenkie De Jong. We settled on Casemiro.
United, who are bottom of the Premier League after heavy defeats to Brighton and Brentford, will pay £50m at the outset.
The overall fee will increase by a further £10m if certain clauses of the contract are met.
Casemiro has been offered a four-year contract with an option to extend for a further 12 months, with the transfer subject to personal terms being agreed.
The 30-year-old joined Real from Sao Paulo in 2013 and has played a key role in the Spanish club’s midfield, winning five Champions League titles.
“Manchester United are delighted to announce that the club has reached an agreement with Real Madrid for the transfer of Casemiro.
“Transfers are subject to personal conditions, UK visa requirements and medical agreements.”
Ten Hag declined to discuss the transfer at Friday’s press conference, but Real boss Carlo Ancelotti spoke more openly to the Spanish media.
“I had a conversation with him this morning. He wants to take on new challenges, new opportunities,” Ancelotti said.
“The club understands that and we have to respect that given what he has done for this club and for who he is.
“If he doesn’t stay, we will be very grateful for everything he has done. We have a replacement in the team.”
Real Madrid announced on Monday that it will hold a “tribute and farewell” to Casemiro, which will be attended by club president Florentino Pérez.
In a statement, the Spanish giants called him “one of the most transcendent players in one of the most important and successful periods of our history.”
“Real Madrid will always be his home and I wish him and all his family the very best in this new chapter of his life.
Casemiro played alongside current United stars Cristiano Ronaldo and Rafael Varane in the Spanish capital.
His arrival would fill the midfield void for Ten Hugs after a long-running pursuit of De Jong fell through.
Casemiro’s wealth of experience and success at the highest level will make him a solid starter instead of Fred or Scott McTominay in central midfield.
He is unlikely to be available for United’s next match against rivals Liverpool at Old Trafford on Monday.
Casemiro’s debut could instead take place at Southampton in the Premier League on 27 August.