Manchester United transfer chief chases midfield trio, but City hold the Haaland adavantage…
We reported in Saturday’s gossip that a bidding war between the Manchester clubs for Erling Haaland was on the horizon.
Real Madrid clearly want everyone to believe that they will have a strike force of the Norwegian and Kylian Mbappe come next season, but the money bags Premier League duo have the upper hand as they, well, have money.
And the Mirror claim City have the ‘transfer advantage’ over United following the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo at Old Trafford.
That’s because United will apparently struggle to meet the wage demands of both CR7 and EH9 (assuming Haaland manages to rip the No.9 shirt from Anthony Martial’s cold, dead hands).
Ronaldo has reportedly become United’s highest earner on £385,000-a-week, pipping David de Gea (£375k) to top spot at Old Trafford.
Haaland (or Mino Raiola) is said to be demanding a whopping £500,000-a-week from his next club, which apparently puts United out of the running…
But here’s an idea… sell De Gea. There you go – problem (almost) solved.
MIDFIELDERS FOR MURTOUGH
ICYMI: Manchester United did not sign a midfielder in the summer. They didn’t really seem to try all that hard to either, which is a little bit odd.
And with that area of the pitch the obvious gap in their armoury, the transfer gossip looks set to be littered with midfield links until they either sign someone, Paul Pogba learns how to be a bit more like old Nemanja Matic, new Nemanja Matic remembers how to be a bit more like old Nemanja Matic, or Fred becomes a little less like Fred and a little more like Yves Bissouma.
And the Brighton star is one of the players transfer chief John Murtough is said to be targeting at Old Trafford, along with Declan Rice, according to the Express.
Rice has reportedly turned down a couple of contract offers from the Hammers and is said to have told the club that the only way he will sign a new deal is if it includes a buyout clause which would be active next summer – which sounds essentially pointless.
His current deal ends in 2025 and while West Ham may reduce their £100m transfer demand slightly next summer, there will surely be a number of clubs interested and the potential for a bidding war could well work in their favour.
Bissouma would likely be a cheaper option (he’s not English, for one thing), but his price is more likely to rise than fall this season – assuming he’s bloody brilliant again.
Another midfielder consistently linked with United is Ruben Neves and United’s rejuvenated friendship with agent Jorge Mendes, who brokered the Ronaldo deal, has put Murtough and United in the driving seat for Neves, according to the Express.
The Red Devils’ relationship with Mendes was testy due to the period in which he was representing De Gea, but that’s now all forgotten with his pockets once again been laden through the Ronaldo deal.