Yet 90min understands that both United and City remain confident of landing Maguire, while Leicester would ultimately settle for less than the £100m package they have been holding out for.
Weighing on the subject, the Daily Mirror alleges that United are now ‘out of the running’ because the Foxes are seeking a deal worth £90m, plus a further £10m in add-ons. The newspaper claims that the Old Trafford club only value Maguire at around £60m.
The subsequent implication from that version of events is that it will now be up to Manchester City to decide whether they are willing to meet Leciester’s lofty demands.
Assuming that United are unwilling to go to £100m, it is difficult to believe that City would. The reigning Premier League champions, while significant spenders in recent years, have often shied away from splashing out the really big cash on single deals. Their club transfer record was only pushed to £60m last summer and is far less than the record fees at United, Liverpool and Chelsea. City have also notably walked away from deals for Alexis Sanchez and Fred.
There is a belief that Leicester could settle, with 90min recently reporting that their valuation of Maguire initially started as high as an eye watering £120m, before dropping to £100m. And it is thought the Foxes would ultimately accept a smaller package in the region of £85m to £90m – still a new world record for defender, as well a potential new record for a British club.
That Leicester’s £100m valuation exceeds what both clubs are currently willing to pay tallies up with existing reports on the developing saga – earlier this week a story from Sky Sports suggested United and City had informed the Foxes of their willingness to pay £65m.
Clearly, there is plenty of negotiating still to be done.
Whether United or City will stretch to £85m or £90m is now the key question, although the confidence of both clubs in the race suggests they think an agreeable deal is possible.
While Leicester are happy to keep Maguire if they do not receive an acceptable offer, 90min understands that the Foxes are eyeing Brighton’s Lewis Dunk and Bristol City’s Adam Webster as possible replacements. However, they will not move for either if Maguire stays.
With Maguire signing a new long-term contract at the King Power Stadium less than a year ago and not actively pushing for a transfer, despite being open to one, the general consensus is that Leicester are under no pressure or obligation to sell. That is why they can demand so much.