Guillem Balague says Saul was offered to Everton and Manchester United

Andrea Berta is a leading candidate to be Manchester United's new director of football

According to reports from Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona chased after Saul Niguez in 2016, after the Atletico Madrid star had a sensational season under Diego Simone. But Barcelona took too much time and the Spanish star then 21 years old, was also hesitant to leave a club he'd been at for almost 10 years.

Spanish outlet Marca report there was interest from both Manchester clubs during the first week of August, while United are understood to have offered to double Hernandez's earnings after letting him know that they were willing to meet his release clause ahead of the closing of the Premier League's transfer window.

United are believed to be embarking on major restructuring of their football operations and looking to appoint a new director of football in the next year.

According to the Evening Standard, Berta is Woodward's top target following his impressive success in the transfer market with Atletico Madrid.

Berta, who has been with Atletico since 2013, was responsible for the club's key signings including Jan Oblak and Jose Gimenez, while he also played a crucial role in convincing Antoine Griezmann to reject Barcelona and sign a new contract this summer.

Jose Mourinho's desperate dash around the transfer window for a defender is now common knowledge, although the extent of it continues to unspool.

'In these years at Atletico he has always achieved good results and gained money.

As was reported several weeks ago, Juventus' Fabio Paratici and Roma's Monchi are also believed to be under consideration by United, as is RB Leipzig's Paul Mitchell, who was previously involved with player recruitment at Southampton and Tottenham.

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