Manchester United will ‘accelerate’ their efforts to sign Ajax defender Lisandro Martinez this week, according to reports.
Arsenal are also very keen on signing the Argentina international and have had two bids rejected by the Eredivisie outfit.
The Red Devils have recently emerged as favourites and hold that extra pull of having Erik ten Hag at the club.
Ten Hag replaced Ralf Rangnick at the end of last season after three years as Martinez’s manager at Ajax.
The Dutch side reportedly want €50m (£43m) for the 24-year-old and United have lodged an offer that was higher than both of Arsenal’s, but still not enough to be accepted.
According to De Telegraaf (via Sport Witness) Ajax are ‘willing to cooperate’ with Manchester United after they put €41m plus €4m in variables on the table.
The club are ‘accelerating their efforts’ and want to get a deal done as soon as possible.
Ajax were originally laid back about the situation; however, the player has reportedly told the club’s hierarchy he wants to leave for United or Arsenal.
🚨 Right now, the battle to sign Lisandro Martinez appears neck & neck. Manchester United weighed in with a £37m offer on Saturday to eclipse Arsenal’s £35m on the table. Arsenal, however, are expected to return with an improved bid. [Star] #afc pic.twitter.com/jNYfnbU4zS
— afcstuff (@afcstuff) July 3, 2022
They will ‘cooperate’ as long as their valuation is met, while the Red Devils want the deal done by Friday in time for their pre-season tour abroad.
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and technical manager Gerry Hamstra held talks with the Premier League club over the weekend but have not yet come to an agreement on a transfer fee.
The player does not want to miss this opportunity to move to the Premier League, but is ‘respectful’ of what Ajax have done for him.
Elsewhere, Cristiano Ronaldo has missed his first day of Manchester United pre-season training due to ‘family reasons’, according to ESPN.
The 37-year-old’s future at the club is in doubt after it was revealed over the weekend that he wants to leave this summer.
United want Ronaldo to see out the final 12 months of his contract and hope that Ten Hag can change his mind through face-to-face talks, but those discussions will have to wait.