Manchester United agrees personal terms with Barcelona midfielder Thiago Alcantara

Manchester United are on the verge of signing Barcelona midfield star Thiago Alcantara in a £17million deal.

The Premier League champions have stolen a march on rivals Manchester City by agreeing personal terms of £5m-a-year with Thiago, 22, and his father Mazinho.

They still have to finalise a deal with Barcelona and sources say that it is unlikely there will be any announcement on Friday, but discussions between the two clubs will continue over the weekend.

Thiago is seen as one of the rising stars of Spanish football and underlined his growing reputation by scoring a hat-trick in his country’s triumph over Italy in the European Under-21 Championship Final earlier this week.

But he has grown increasingly frustrated over his lack of opportunities at the Nou Camp despite assurances from Barca that they see him as a future leader of their team.