Mino Raiola, the agent of Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba, is believed to have postponed talks over a contract renewal for the Frenchman until April 2022 to fully evaluate all options.
Pogba has entered the final year of his current deal and has never ruled out the idea of signing an extension, but as he is 28 years old, he sees this contract as perhaps the final big one of his career and he is reluctant to rule anything out at this stage.
While Barcelona are not expected to pursue the player, Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are keeping a close eye on the situation in the hope of landing Pogba on a free transfer. Their chances of doing so have been boosted by claims from AS that Raiola has shelved contract talks until April.
Pogba recently said he is still happy at United, but he and Raiola have no intention of rushing a decision and want to make sure they fully understand the football landscape before they sign a contract which would effectively end his chances of sealing a big move elsewhere - 90min revealed back in July that the Frenchman wants to evaluate all of the options available to him.
For Pogba, being part of a competitive squad is perhaps the most important thing, and while there is an acceptance that United are moving in the right direction, recent results have hardly reinforced the idea that the Red Devils are Premier League title contenders.
To complicate things, Pogba's fit in the team has often been a little awkward. He does not start every game in midfield, has regularly been utilised on the left wing and is said to be concerned that constant minutes in a central role are not a guarantee under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
With all that in mind, Pogba appears set to delay talks until well into the new year, by which point any suitors will be free to make concrete contact over a free transfer.
Real and PSG plan to reach out, while other suitors such as Juventus may force their way into the race should Pogba continue to inch closer to the exit door at Old Trafford.
The report stresses United's determination to convince Pogba to re-sign, but a lot of their argument will come down to what the team do on the pitch and whether the midfielder can be genuinely convinced that trophies are attainable at Old Trafford.