Ajax have told Manchester United they will not be able to sign Daley Blind on the cheap.
The need for reinforcements at Old Trafford was laid bare in the most humiliating fashion on Tuesday night as United were dumped out of the Capital One Cup with a 4-0 defeat to MK Dons.
United’s lack of depth was easy for all to see as fringe players like Anderson, Danny Welbeck, Javier Hernandez and Shinji Kagawa all failed to impress manager Louis van Gaal.
The new United boss made his fourth signing of the summer on Tuesday in the shape of Angel di Maria, who cost a British transfer record fee of £59.7million, and more new arrivals are expected before Monday’s deadline.
Blind, a versatile Dutchman who can play left-back or in central midfield, is on Van Gaal’s transfer wish list, but Ajax want to hold on to the player for another year so they will not let him go cheaply in this window.
"We believe that we currently have a strong team and want Daley to stay for another year," Ajax director of football Marc Overmars told Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf.
"Only if the absolute top price is paid is a transfer negotiable.
"Daley’s management know how we feel at the moment.
"Next year we will have a much more lenient policy, we are willing to talk with Daley and we will settle for a reasonable price."
"One of the objectives and one of the goals would be to actually get back into the Champions League."
Di Maria’s form at the World Cup was one of the main reasons why United had to pay so much for the former Benfica man.
The winger was named on the shortlist for player of the tournament, even though he missed the final defeat to Germany and the last-four encounter against Holland, who were then managed by Van Gaal.
The prospect of playing under Van Gaal excites Di Maria, who has signed a five-year contract with United.
"I am looking forward to working with Louis van Gaal, he is a very good manager and he did very well with Holland during the World Cup," he said.
Di Maria hopes the presence of compatriot Marcos Rojo and fellow Spanish speakers like Juan Mata, David de Gea and Ander Herrera will help him settle in at United, where the players have been instructed to speak English to each other.
"I don’t speak English at the moment, so to have people who speak Spanish is a big help for me," Di Maria added.
"I hope I will be able to learn English very quickly and get used to the city very quickly."