"Absolutely dead in the water" - Journalist explains how Louis van Gaal prevented Manchester United from signing Jurrien Timber

Timber (R) was expected to join Manchester United in the summer.
Timber (R) was expected to join Manchester United in the summer.
Vatsal Vora

Journalist Marcel van der Kraan of De Telegraaf has claimed that Dutch manager Louis van Gaal prevented Jurrien Timber from signing for Manchester United in the summer.

According to van der Kraan, van Gaal made it absolutely clear to Timber that his place in the World Cup squad could be jeopardized if he joins the Red Devils. The deal thus did not materialize despite positive initial talks between Manchester United and Timber's representatives.

Speaking on Sky Sports, Marcel van der Kraan said the following in regards to the transfer:

"Absolutely dead in the water. The player I think was ready to come, his agents went over to London, to Manchester United's officers two weeks ago, had very good talks. The money was never a problem."

He added:

"But then one man turned up, Louis van Gaal. He told the player in the Dutch camp, 'Look if you go there, I think your chances could be limited for playing for Holland in the World Cup three months later.' Now for Jurrien Timber, a great Ajax style player, a ten Hag style player, that was a bit of a blow. Louis van Gaal made it clear that he would not be in his Dutch team if he was playing every week for United."

Timber values his place in the Dutch national team more than a breakout move to Old Trafford. Hence, he turned down the offer to join Erik ten Hag at United as per van der Kraan, who further said:

"But Timber said, 'Look boss, I can't come with you to United because my Holland place is much more important.' "
Newly-appointed Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag is reportedly 'stunned' by the reluctance of Jurrien Timber to follow him to Old Trafford.

Jurrien Timber had an outstanding 2021-22 season for Ajax under the management of Erik ten Hag. The Dutchman made 43 appearances for the Eredivisie giants across all competitions, contributing three goals and two assists along the way.

Timber's recent good form has seen him become a part of the Netherlands setup under Louis van Gaal. The 21-year-old defender played twice in the UEFA Nations League in the recently concluded international break.

Manchester United need reinforcements in defense ahead of the 2022-23 season

Manchester United have been in the market for a new defender in the summer transfer window. Jurrien Timber and Villarreal's Pau Torres have been the two names linked with a move to Old Trafford in the summer, according to Sky Sports.

The Red Devils could be light in defense heading into the new season. According to MARCA, Leeds United are one of the three clubs interested in signing Phil Jones in the coming months.

πŸ“ - Leeds United want #mufc’s Phil Jones this summer. [@marca]

As per HITC, Eric Bailly could also be on his way out, with Newcastle United being one of the interested parties.

This will leave the club with just three centre-backs in the squad, namely Harry Maguire, Raphael Varane and Victor Lindelof.

Edited by Sudeshna Banerjee


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