Manchester United are said to have made contact with the agents of Atlético Madrid winger Thomas Lemar, who has strangely been described as their 'top target' for the summer transfer window.
The 24-year-old's time in Spain has been a huge disappointment, having managed just three goals and six assists since joining in the summer of 2018.
However, despite that poor form, ESPN's Julien Laurens believes that United are still interested in signing Lemar, and he goes as far as to suggest that the Frenchman is actually their primary target.
As the story goes, United are planning for a 'summer of world-class signings'. That could well be right, given the club's desire to compete for silverware once more, but why would Lemar be at the top of the pile?
He's expected to hit the market this summer, with Atlético boss Diego Simeone confessing that Lemar has failed to live up to expectations at the club, although he is still likely to be hugely expensive.
Thomas Lemar has had two shots on target in 811 minutes of playing time in LaLiga this season— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) March 20, 2020
He cost Atletico Madrid €60M less than two years ago... pic.twitter.com/gqYCK2DMr2
Given Atlético paid around €70m for him and he is still under contract until 2023, Lemar is not going to come cheap and there's surely no way that United will pay close to €70m for a player with Lemar's recent numbers.
Even if that's not enough to convince you that this isn't happening, just consider Lemar's position. He's a left winger. Who else is a left winger?
That's right - Marcus Rashford. The poster boy for United.
Why would United pay big money to replace their most valuable asset with someone older who brings a worse return in front of goal?
On the pitch or not, @ManUtd fans don’t get much bigger than me.— Marcus Rashford (@MarcusRashford) January 20, 2020
You best believe I'll be involved in team meetings, team huddles and team sessions throughout this recovery pic.twitter.com/MeLuGic4c4
Bringing Lemar in for cheap as a normal signing would make sense, given he's still young and has plenty of time to reach his potential, but to describe him as a big-money top target seems a little bizarre.
Laurens notes that United will meet with a whole host of representatives over the coming months as they finalise their summer strategy, so they will probably find hundreds of better options than signing Lemar.