Man United transfers: Thiago set for Barcelona pre-season training

Man United transfers: Barcelona confirm Red Devils target Thiago Alcantara will return to the club for pre-season training as scheduled

david moyes
David Moyes has replaced Sir Alex Ferguson at Man United Photo: Back Page Images

Thiago Alcantara is set to return to pre-season training with Barcelona despite being heavily linked with Manchester United, according to a spokesman for the Catalan side.

The 22-year-old is expected to link up with his current team-mates after the young midfielder helped Spain win the European Under-21 championship in Israel last month.

The Red Devils, who appointed David Moyes as Sir Alex Ferguson’s replacement, were reported to be weighing up a big-money offer to lure the highly-rated Spaniard to Old Trafford this summer.

But Barcelona spokesman Toni Freixa confirmed Thiago will return to training as scheduled.

“We have the players we have and Thiago is one of them,” Freixa told Radio Catalunya.

“Pre-season with us begins as scheduled.”

In June, former Barcelona manager Johan Cryuff urged the La Liga champions to allow Thiago to leave the club if the Catalan side couldn’t guarantee the youngster regular first-team football.

“At this point comes the philosophy of the club – you should assign, sell and invest in a player and do it as what you think is right,” Cruyff told the Manchester Evening News.

“If he really has little chance to play, then he has to go. It all depends on Barcelona’s plans.

“If there is little chance that he will get regular playing time, he should leave.

“However, if Barca tell him that he will be a starter, he should stay put. It’s all quite simple really.

“Thiago has a lot of quality and he has plenty of time as he’s still young. Any decision he will take will prove to be a good one.”

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