Man Utd weigh up move for cheap €15m defender as Lineker hits out at ‘extraordinary’ Ratcliffe decision

Joe Williams
Man Utd transfer target Oumar Solet
Oumar Solet could be on his way to Old Trafford this summer.

Man Utd are weighing up the possibility of making an offer for RB Salzburg defender Oumar Solet this summer, according to reports.

The Red Devils have a small transfer budget this summer with rumours they will only have around £50m to spend before player sales.

It is likely to be a summer of change with new Man Utd co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS reportedly willing to listen to offers for most of the Red Devils squad.

Ratcliffe is adamant Man Utd will get value for money in the transfer market under his guidance after over a decade of overspending on average players.

Centre-back is one area of Erik ten Hag’s side which has become a priority to improve with the Red Devils putting in a £35m offer for Everton’s Jarrad Branthwaite last week.

But the Toffees are reportedly demanding a fee in the region of £70m and Man Utd could potentially look at cheaper alternatives with Salzburg defender Solet one potential option.

RMC Sport in France are claiming that the Red Devils are interested in Solet with the former France Under-20 international looking ‘to take a step forward to continue his progress’.

It is understood that Man Utd are ‘watching him closely, as is another English team’ while an Italian club has also enquired about his services, with any deal for Solet expected to be done for between €12m and €15m.

Despite reports that Ten Hag could be sacked, the Dutchman is staying on at Old Trafford and Gary Lineker and Micah Richards have been discussing the treatment of the former Ajax boss.

Speaking to The Rest Is Football podcast, Richards said: “It’s so poor, isn’t it? We spoke about how Jim Ratcliffe had came in and had hired proper footballing people, but then you’re hearing stories like this… it’s just ridiculous.”

Lineker replied: “It’s extraordinary, actually. I’ve never known anything like this.”

Richards added: “How can they interview another manager, but tell him [ten Hag] that they’ve been speaking with another manager? And then ten Hag says “okay, I’ll stay”. If I was manager, I’d say “okay, that’s not for me.”

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Lineker continued: “In his defence, and he deserves to be defended, he’s won two titles in two years, the league cup and now the FA Cup. We all knew that Manchester United had spoken to other people, and he wasn’t happy with the way people had been speaking about him. He came to us [at Wembley] wanting to speak live about the situation.”

“I genuinely felt for him under those circumstances, having won them a couple of trophies and being told indirectly you’re to be sacked. I told him “I hope you’re there next season” because I do.”