The Portuguese press are reporting this evening that Manchester United have stepped up their chase for Sporting Lisbon’s William Carvalho.

Carvalho has apparently been named as a priority signing for Louis van Gaal and representatives from the club travelled to Lisbon to discuss the transfer today.

The player has a buy-out clause for £36m but United are reluctant to pay that much for the 22-year-old.

United already have links with Sporting, after signing Cristiano Ronaldo and Nani from them in the past, but the Portuguese side are keen to get as close to the £36m clause as possible. It has been reported that Jose Mourinho is also a big fan and that Chelsea are monitoring the situation.

When asked about his future earlier this week, the player was reluctant to commit himself.

“Will I stay at Sporting? I don’t know. I’m going back to Portugal and then we’ll see.”