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Man Utd reluctance to sign Argentine star opens the door for Chelsea

Manchester United’s reluctance to close the deal  has allowed Chelsea to add their name to the list of suitors and the Express understands that the Blues are ready to challenge their Premier League rival for the player’s signature.

Garay started his career with Argentine club Newell’s Old Boys before making the switch to Spain with Racing Santander. Real Madrid swooped in for the defender in 2008 but the Argentina international failed to make a mark at the Bernabeu where he slipped down the pecking order under manager Jose Mourinho.

Benfica provided him an escape route in 2011 where he has developed into one of Europe’s best centre-backs. Manchester United have been keeping tabs on the 26-year old with Sir Alex Ferguson sending his brother to scout the player on more than one occasion.

The Red Devils have reportedly asked Benfica to name their price for Garay as they step up their chase to land the player. The Premier League leaders have worries over the futures of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic and identify Garay as the long-term replacement for the veterans.

However, United’s hesitation in making a move has allowed Chelsea to slip in and challenge for the £15 million-rated Garay. The Blues have concerns over John Terry with the skipper out of contract in 2014 and David Luiz, who is looking like a potential departure amid interest from Barcelona.