• Manchester United manager a long-time admirer of Croat
• Real Madrid likely to want at least £25m for Luka Modric
David Moyes is considering a bid for Luka Modric now that Manchester United's pursuit of Barcelona's Cesc Fábregas appears over, with the manager a long-term admirer of the Real Madrid playmaker.
With the 27-year-old having been transferred to Real from Tottenham Hotspur for £33m last summer, any initial offer for Modric would have to be in the region of £25m for a midfielder who fell down the pecking order under José Mourinho, who was his coach until the Portuguese rejoined Chelsea in the close season.
Moyes has made the purchase of a top-class goalscoring midfielder his priority this summer and was hopeful that Fábregas could become the first major signing of his tenure. But after the former Arsenal captain publicly stated on Thursday that he wished to remain at Barça, Moyes could now firm up his interest in Modric.
Since leaving Tottenham for Real last summer the 27-year-old has failed to establish himself at the Bernabéu and with his four years at White Hart Lane he matches Fábregas's profile of having proven experience of the Premier League. Although Moyes is an admirer, there is also a view at United that Modric can sometimes lack robustness and there are questions regarding his goal return when at Spurs, where he managed only 13 in 123 league starts for the club.
Although Modric scored at Old Trafford when Real knocked United out of the Champions League last season this was only a second strike in what proved the modest total of three for his campaign, and came after Nani was controversially sent off during the last-16 second leg match.
After having bids of £26m and £30m rejected by Barcelona for Fábregras before the 26-year-old ruled out a move to United, Moyes would be expected to offer around £25m in the first instance if the club did decide to bid. With just over three weeks remaining until the transfer window closes the manager is conscious that time is starting to press as he attempts to add two midfielders to his squad.
Moyes wants the second of these to be a more defensive-minded player and as he considers making a formal bid for Everton's Marouane Fellaini, the Scot is hoping to assess Sevilla's Geoffrey Kondogbia during Rio Ferdinand's testimonial at Old Trafford on Friday evening, should he feature in Unai Emery's squad.
Kondogbia is a holding player who is interesting a host of Europe's top clubs, including Arsenal, Chelsea and Real. The Frenchman, who has represented his country at under-20 level, has a release clause that is thought to stand at around €10m (£8.5m), and last week Emery told Marca: "We want him to stay here but there are circumstances that could lead to an exit. We will not make any movement to sell. There is no need to sell and we all know that in the club."
Despite impressing for Sevilla last year in his first season there after moving from Lens, at 20 Kondogbia represents potential unlike Fellaini, who played for five years under Moyes at Everton.