Man Utd eye free Rice alternative to ‘rejuvenate’ midfield

Will Ford
Boubacar Kamara
Boubacar Kamara

Manchester United are keeping tabs on Boubacar Kamara as an option if they are unable to sign Declan Rice next summer.

As reported in the gossip, the Manchester Evening News has Rice pegged as United’s priority next summer. Indeed, it is claimed that ‘United figures have already discussed the potential framework for a deal’.

Which presumably would involve paying a fee in the region of £100million. That was said to be West Ham’s asking price this year and Rice’s value to the Hammers is hardly likely to fall this season.

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But according to Fichajes (via Sport Witness) Kamara has ’emerged’ as a ‘new market opportunity’ for United and other top teams around Europe following his impressive displays for Marseille.

The 21-year-old – valued at £33m by Transfermarkt – will be allowed to talk to potential suitors in January with his current contract set to expire in the summer of 2022.

There is no news of extension talks with the Ligue 1 club and three clubs are said to circling – United, Arsenal and Sevilla.

The report claims United are searching for someone to ‘rejuvenate’ their midfield and the bosses see Kamara as ‘more than an interesting talent’.

Meanwhile, United fans eagerly await the second debut of Cristiano Ronaldo, who rejoined the club in a sensational summer transfer.

And former teammate Wayne Rooney has backed the Portugal international to have a “massive impact” on his return to the Premier League.

Rooney said: “I think he’s still one of the best players in the world.

“I think we’ve seen in the game against Ireland that’s what he does, last couple of minutes he scores two goals, two great headers, so he can have a massive impact on this league.

“I think United are finally ready to go and challenge for the title, and I really feel they have to this year.

“[Ronaldo’s] going to be a big player, I think he’ll have very big moments in the season and I’m sure he’ll score a lot of goals.

“I follow Manchester United, I want them to do well, and I think it’s great for them that they’ve brought Cristiano back.

“His mentality will rub off on the younger players especially, so I think it’s great timing.

“I think Cristiano will know himself it’s not going to be as simple or as straightforward as it was in Spain or in Italy for him.

“It’s a physical league, he knows, he’s played in it, so I’m sure he’s prepared and he’s ready to go and score goals again for Manchester United.”