Aymeric Laporte
Aymeric Laporte (left) reportedly wants a move to Manchester UnitedReuters

Manchester United are ready to make big moves right at the end of the January transfer window, by inking mega deals for two central defenders.

Reports on Wednesday suggested Mats Hummels was a major target for Manchester United, with Louis Van Gaal confident a €50 million (£37 million) bid will be enough to persuade Borussia Dortmund to sell in the next few days.

Hummels has been Van Gaal's number one target for a while, with the manager seeing the German as the perfect man to shore up and organise his defence.

Joining Hummels in the back-four could be Aymeric Laporte, who has been tipped for a big future.

The 20-year-old has been earning rave reviews for his displays at Athletic Bilbao, with the La Liga club saying the only way their defender will leave the club is if they receive his release clause amount of £31 million.

According to reputed Spanish journalist Guillem Balague, Manchester United have held talks with Laporte and his agent and are planning a move before the January transfer window shots on 2 February.

"Athletic Bilbao don't know anything about United coming in, but Laporte does, and would be happy to go if they come with that money," he said, according to the Daily Star.

"It will be a tense week in Bilbao."

Balague also tweeted confirming United's interest in Laporte and the fact that the English Premier League club will have to pay the full £31 million to sign the French defender.

"On Laporte. Buyout clause £31m. Athletic Bilbao, who expect an offer from MUFC, wont sell for less. Laporte happy 2 go if Utd pays full fee," tweeted Balague.

The fact that the player wants a transfer will encourage Van Gaal to make his move, but it remains to be seen of Laporte is seen as the second option to Hummels or as an addition to the Germany international.

While money is far from a problem for Manchester United, it will be surprising if they paid nearly £70 million for two defenders, even if there is no denying that it will help the team tighten up at the back a little more, which will in turn allow Van Gaal to apply more forward-thinking tactics rather than the circumspect formation with five men at the back.