It’s clear for all to see that the Bruno Fernandes transfer saga is the story of the January transfer window.
Over the past week, the back pages have been dominated by the twists and turns of this proposed move as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer desperately tries to seal a deal for the Portugal ace.
Bruno Fernandes’ move to Man United could be off
Now, however, no one quite knows whether a transfer will materialise.
Manchester United are reportedly baulking at Sporting’s asking price for the playmaker, while the Primeira Liga outfit are being equally stubborn and are refusing to budge over the fee.
Other reports sensationally claim that rivals Man City could now swoop in on the 25-year-old in what would be a stunning turn of events.
But if the deal does fall through, who could Solskjaer turn to?
talkSPORT.com has five emergency alternatives who could make their way to Old Trafford.
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Isco (Real Madrid)
In recent days, there have been numerous reports circulating that Real are willing to part ways with their playmaker to free up some of their wage bill.
Isco, who joined the LaLiga giants for 27million in 2013 from Malaga, has fallen out of a favour under Zinedine Zidane – making just 11 league appearances this term.
The Spaniard has made 195 appearances for the club, but he is now 27 and isn’t getting any younger and must surely be on the hunt for more minutes.
He is supremely talented and Solskjaer should go all out for him if Fernandes isn’t signed, though Chelsea are also keen on the Spain ace.
Isco has struggled for game time this season
Kai Havertz (Bayer Leverkusen)
The 20-year-old is widely regarded as the future of German football and it’s hard to disagree with those claims.
Havertz is a star already and it is only a matter of time before he moves from Bayer Leverkusen to a bigger club.
He has been a regular for them during the past four seasons and was named in the Bundesliga Team of the Year last term after scoring a remarkable 17 league goals.
The 20-year-old already has 126 first team appearances for Leverkusen since making his debut in 2016, and hes also won seven full international caps for Germany.
To capture him, though, Solskjaer would have to bid in excess of £100m and would also have to fend off reported interest from Liverpool.
Havertz is seen as the next star of German football
Marcos Llorente (Atletico Madrid)
Should their pursuit of Fernandes fail, United are reportedly keen on a loan deal for Atletico Madrid star Marcos Llorente.
Manchester Evening News report that Solskjaer would consider a move for the 24-year-old until the end of the season.
He has only started three La Liga matches since sealing a £35m move from Real Madrid.
However, after failing to prove himself at the Wanda Metropolitano, a move to sign him would represent a risk for United.
Llorente has failed to break into the starting XI at Atletico
Saul Niguez (Atletico Madrid)
Another Atleti ace on Uniteds radar is Saul.
The 25-year-old, who can play on the wing or in the No.10 role, has been a standout player in Diego Simeone’s side for the last few years.
Hes another of the clubs near misses with David Moyes coming close to landing him when he was in charge.
But if the Fernandes deal falls through he could be an option again.
Saul has been one of the best players for Atletico in recent years
Jack Grealish (Aston Villa)
It is highly unlikely the Villans allow their beloved captain to leave in the middle of the season, but if United submit a sizeable bid – you never know what could happen.
The 24-year-old has been the club’s most important player on their return to the Premier League this season, netting seven goals and adding five assists in 21 appearances.
Unsurprisingly, his red-hot form has seen interest mount in his services, with the Red Devils most strongly linked with a move for the playmaker.
If Villa get relegated he will almost certainly leave the club as he is simply too good for the Championship.
Grealish is on the radar of Man United