David Moyes has launched a bid for Marouane Fellaini - signalling the end of Manchester United's pursuit of Cesc Fabregas.

United boss Moyes has returned to Everton the club he left for the champions last month for the Belgium midfielder - who has had a £23.5million buy-out clause allowing him to move to a Champions League club this summer.

However it is understood that United's valuation is not as high as that so the clubs could be set for a tussle over his services even though Moyes is desperate to strengthen his midfield.

Barcelona midfielder Fabregas had been Moyes' No1 target but the ex-Arsenal captain is due to publicly pledge his future to the Nou Camp on Thursday.

United have had two bids turned down and had been considering a third but not only do Barca not want him to leave the terms of Arsenal's buy-back option means it would only be worth their while to sell for a fee of over £40m.

Moyes - who also lost out to Bayern Munich for Barca's young midfielder Thiago Alcantra - knows Fellaini well but also has respect for his former employers whose left-back Leighton Baines is also on his hit-list.

New Everton boss Roberto Martinez will be determined to keep Fellaini but the Belgian powerhouse wants to play in the Champions League - the reason that release clause was inserted in his latest contract.