Speculation continues to rage; we take a look at the most likely transfers to happen at Manchester United this summer and how likely they are.
The Dane has been linked to Manchester United in the past but never as strongly as the speculation has led us to believe this week. Spurs are keen to raise money and don’t want to risk losing Eriksen for nothing. His most likely suitors abroad, Juventus and Real Madrid, have spent so much this summer that they are probably willing to wait for the contract to expire next year.
United could take advantage of that situation and have been in preliminary talks to do just that. Spurs know they will have to compromise and United hope that compromise will come in the form of £50m. But it’s a big transfer; with time running out, it seems unlikely that these fresh talks can be concluded before Thursday. Furthermore, it is suggested that Eriksen still favours a move to Spain, and with the player holding all the aces, it would have to be a remarkable turnaround at this stage to see him move to Old Trafford.
Likelihood : 25%
The Juventus striker was linked with United as part of the Italian club’s swoop for Romelu Lukaku. Lukaku has agreed personal terms on a move to Turin but Paulo Dybala, the third cog in the wheel, deliberated, causing the whole thing to push apart. Some sources have reckoned that the Mandzukic deal is a separate one but that does not appear to be the case, as United have been linked to alternate targets.
Likelihood : 10%
The physical presence provided by Mandzukic could well be provided by Llorente, the forward currently available on a free transfer after being released from Spurs. There was speculation he might sign a new deal with the London club, while the surprise link to United came after the stumble in the talks with Juventus. It’s convenience and cost will appeal to Ed Woodward, it’s underwhelming nature would disappoint fans, who would prefer to see a youngster given the opportunity.
Likelihood : 20%
It all seemed to be done and dusted when United said they would not be messed around, but Dybala’s camp threw a spanner in the works by suggesting that the player did in fact want to accept the offer Solskjaer and Woodward had presented.
United have, however, distanced themselves from talk of a resurrected deal, and Spurs are now trying to convince Dybala to move to the Premier League. It seems unlikely that United will re-enter talks.
Likelihood : 0%
The Sporting Lisbon playmaker has been touted for a move all summer by his club but as yet nobody has been willing to take the punt, despite various outlets reporting at various points that deals had been agreed with different clubs.
United have briefed strongly that they are not interested, through the most reported of sources.
Likelihood : 0%
The strongest link with regards United’s midfield plans, Longstaff was apparently available at a cost of £50m, with Solskjaer’s highest bid coming in at £30m. The valuations were so wide apart that United have not proceeded, and at this stage, Newcastle are unlikely to compromise.
Likelihood : 0%
Other deals :
United’s midfield options are not the strongest, while the forward line lacks seniority. Solskjaer appears to want a creative, or hardworking, midfielder, and an experienced forward. After the Harry Maguire deal was announced the club briefed their business could be done. Something unexpected may occur but it seems a remote possibility at this stage.
The striker’s future will continue to hang in the balance for some time if it isn’t sorted out by Thursday and United at least will breathe a little easier on this score as the closure of the window for other European clubs comes later in August. Lukaku has been disciplined for his social media activity, clearly wants to go, and has been training with Anderlecht as the breakdown between player and club has reached a rapid low. The Belgian will surely leave; United may well be forced into selling for a lower price than their valuation.
Likelihood : 90%
Pogba has been strongly linked with a move to Real Madrid as Zinedine Zidane clearly wants him; but the offers from Madrid have been derisory and as United have proved in the past, they won’t be bullied into selling for lower than the player’s value.
Juventus are interested but the negotiations will likely be much tougher than the straightforward talks to sign Lukaku which collapsed. There seems little chance that United would sell without buying considering they have already lost two of their senior midfielders this year.
Likelihood : 5%
Other deals :
There will almost certainly be some action; expect some young players to be loaned out, while one or two of the senior defenders will surely be moved on. Phil Jones has been linked with Newcastle, while Arsenal’s need for a defender may cause them to make a move for one of United’s squad players.