Manchester United's loan deal for Fabio Coentrao collapsed late on Monday night, with the club having failed to get the necessary agreement through in time.
Reports this morning were that the Real Madrid left-back had not been released in time for the deal to go through, leaving Fifa unable to confirm the loan. Madrid were seeking a replacement for him for their squad - also a deal that was not completed.
United made their move as it became clear during the day that there was no chance of a last-minute deal for Everton's Leighton Baines, a target for them all summer.
United made six bids for Baines - three individual and three joint bids including Marouane Fellaini. They bid £15m for Baines on Sunday night but Everton chairman Bill Kenwright was unwilling to entertain the offer - despite the player himself wishing to leave.
Coentrao, 25, was the emergency option having been made available by Madrid this summer. Regular left-back Patrice Evra will be out of contract next summer.
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- Stephen Carter