Barcelona set €55m asking price for midfield maestro, United ready to hijack Matthijs de Ligt deal and more Manchester United Transfer News: May 22, 2019
Hello and welcome back to the Manchester United Transfer News round-up for 22nd May 2019. We are back with the top transfer stories of the day involving Manchester United and here are our top five picks for today.
#5 Solskjaer willing to let Eric Bailly leave in a swap deal with Tottenham
The Express reports that United Boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is willing to let Eric Bailly leave this summer if the defender wishes for a move out of Old Trafford. The Ivory Coast international joined Manchester United from Villareal in the summer of 2016 and enjoyed a good first season. However, a combination of lack of form and injuries saw him drop down the pecking order at Old Traffoed. Since Solskjaer's appointment in December 2018, the Ivorian has started just three games in the Premier League.
Bailly finished the season with just 12 appearances in the Premier League and 17 appearances in total. With a new defender a priority in the summer, it seems that Solskjaer has made up his mind about the Ivorian. Tottenham and Arsenal are reportedly on the lookout for defensive reinforcements in the summer and are monitoring the situation closely. As per the Express, United are readying a swap deal with Tottenham involving Bailly and Alderweireld.
#4 Barcelona set asking price for United target
According to the Daily Record, Manchester United's interest in Ivan Rakitic has prompted Barcelona to set an asking price on the star midfielder. The Catalan giants have put a €55 million price tag on the 30-year-old, whose game time would certainly be affected by the arrival of Frenkie de Jong from Ajax. Manchester United, on the other hand, are willing to spend above €30 million for a replacement for Ander Herrera and the Croatian reportedly fits the bill.
Rakitic has been one of the most important midfielders in the Barcelona team for quite some time now and is a silent worker who does all the dirty work as well as has an eye for the killer pass. The Croatian has made 52 appearances for Barcelona this season, scoring five goals and registering seven assists. He could be a fine addition to the United squad, who desperately lack experience and composure in midfield.
#3 United ready to compete with City and PSG for Real Madrid star
Spanish outlet Sport has claimed that United are ready to compete with Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain for the signature of Isco. All three clubs are waiting for Real Madrid's decision regarding the sale of the Spanish midfielder. It is said that Real Madrid are ready to offload Isco because of the controversies that keep surrounding him and to free up their transfer budget.
Isco had an indifferent season at the Santiago Bernabeu, making 32 appearances in all competitions, most of which have been from the bench. It is clear that he is no longer guaranteed a first team place after he ended the season with six goals and two assists. However, his €750 million release clause is a huge deal breaker. Sport also reveals that Real Madrid are willing to lower their expected price to €120 million in a bid to attract potential suitors.
Manchester United continue to keep close tabs on the situation and Solskjaer might be temped to pounce for the Spaniard if Real Madrid place him on the market.
#2 United ready to hijack Matthijs de Ligt deal
Manchester United are reportedly trying to hijack Barcelona's deal for Matthijs de Ligt, the Metro has reported, quoting Spanish News outlet Catalunya Radio. The Dutchman was apparently on his way to the Camp Nou, ready to join his friend Frenkie de Jong. However, reports are now emerging that Mino Raiola, the player's agent, has made a u-turn and demanded a bigger salary for his client and an even meatier agent's fee for himself.
Barcelona are reluctant to pay more than the amount they had previously agreed upon and are expecting that the player will be willing to join Barcelona anyway. This is where United have entered the scene and made things pretty interesting. The Red Devils are willing to meet Riaola's demands and are rumoured to have presented a better deal on the table. De Ligt himself is thought to be open to the idea of joining the rebuilding process at United, a fact that could heavily tilt the balance in favour of the Premier League giants.
The Red Devils are currently looking for a central defender and the Dutchman, who could cost around £60 million, has the ability to be the solution to all their problems.
#1 David De Gea rejects final contract offer from United
We end today's segment with some grave news for the Manchester United supporters. In what could turn out to be the biggest concern of the summer for United, the Metro reports that David de Gea has rejected United's final contract offer, which means that the club will be left with no option other than cashing in on the goalkeeper. Since his contract runs out in 2020, the Premier League giants have to act this summer or risk losing him for nothing next year.
De Gea had apparently asked for a huge £350,000-a-week deal, but United's final offer was significantly below that magic number. This means that the Spaniard's time at Old Trafford might be coming to an end which could be a huge blow to Solskjaer's rebuilding process. De Gea has consistently been one of the best players of the team for years and is a record four-time winner of the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year Award. The Spaniard has suffered owing to United's poor defense of late, but his departure will leave a void that will be very tough to fill.
PSG have emerged as the potential suitor, and they are willing to either pay £60 million this season or wait until he is available for free next year. The Ligue 1 giants are understood to be willing to match his salary requirements as well. If a deal does go through, it will be a devastating set-back for Solskjaer as well as United, ahead of the new season.
Stay tuned for our next update on Manchester United's transfer news