Manchester United chairman, Ed Woodward, has told manager Jose Mourinho he needs to emulate local rivals Manchester City’s policies of buying younger stars, reports the UK Mirror.
Mourinho’s preferred targets this summer included a pair of 29-year-old players, Toby Alderweireld and Ivan Perisic.
But the club did not feel they could spend big on players with no resale value.
Instead, United urged Mourinho to avoid short-term fixes and work with players already on the roster.
Mourinho had been desperate to add a defender to his squad, before the Premier League kick-off against Leicester at Old Trafford on Friday.
But proposed deals for Harry Maguire, Alderweireld, Yerry Mina, Jerome Boateng and Diego Godin never materialised.