Manchester United are now “preparing their opening bid” for Chelsea playmaker Mason Mount, according to Fabrizio Romano.
Mount is expected to leave the Blues in the summer and the Red Devils are leading the race for his signature.
Liverpool, Arsenal and Bayern Munich have also been strongly linked with the England international.
Despite the fact the player is out of contract next summer, Chelsea have reportedly slapped a whopping £70million price tag on their academy graduate.
Understandably, United are reluctant to pay that sort of fee for someone entering the final 12 months of their contract.
No bid has been lodged by Erik ten Hag’s side at the time of writing, but Romano says it is coming.
Writing for CaughtOffside, Romano has claimed United are currently “preparing” their opening offer for Mount, who is “keen on the move”.
“Manchester United are preparing their opening bid for Mason Mount but the main issue remains Chelsea’s position on price tag,” the Italian journalist said.
“Man Utd remain calm as Mount’s keen on the move — strategy game on.”
Meanwhile, speaking on his YouTube channel earlier this week, Romano said Chelsea are not willing to negotiate their valuation of Mount.
“There is still no official bid from Man United to Chelsea. United know, at the moment, that Chelsea don’t want to negotiate,” he said.
“Chelsea are not open at the moment to sit at a table and negotiate for Mason Mount… €80m (£69m) at least, or nothing. This is the position of Chelsea for Mount.
“At the moment United don’t want to pay that money. They want to pay way less than this. This is why there is a big gap between United and Chelsea. Let’s see if Chelsea open negotiations in the next days.
“We know the player is keen on the move, so Mount will be prepared to say ‘yes’ to this opportunity to leave Chelsea and go to United. But again it’s Chelsea creating the biggest issue. They are not accepting this possibility.”
Mount scored three goals and made six assists in 35 appearances across all competitions in what was a disappointing 2022/23 campaign from a player and club standpoint.
Chelsea finished 12th in the Premier League despite spending close to £600m on transfers.
As a player who has come through the club’s academy, Mount being linked with a summer exit comes as a bit of a surprise.
However, the club’s hectic recruitment and the huge wages the 24-year-old’s teammates have been given have cast doubt over his future.
Mount reportedly wants to be amongst the club’s highest earners and his place in the starting XI is no longer guaranteed.