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Manchester United step up interest in 24-year-old as doubts emerge over Jadon Sancho's future: Reports

Jadon Sancho has been in poor form for Manchester United this season.
Jadon Sancho has been in poor form for Manchester United this season.

Manchester United are reportedly keen to sign AZ Alkmaar star Jesper Karlsson as an apt replacement for underperforming Jadon Sancho.

Karlsson, 24, has established himself as one of the best stars in the Eredivisie since joining AZ from IF Elfsborg for around £2 million in the summer of 2020. He shot to fame with his electric outings last season, registering 21 goals and 16 assists in 51 appearances in the process.

A right-footed attacker blessed with pace and flair, the 8-cap Sweden international is adept at operating across the frontline. Operating mainly as a left inside-forward, he has opened the ongoing 2022-23 season on a lackluster note, scoring just four goals and contributing three assists in 14 matches across all competitions for Pascal Jansen's side.

Jesper Karlsson is expected to stay at AZ Alkmaar this January, it’s hard for him to leave. They would ask €20M-€30M for his departure this summer. 🇸🇪🔴 #Alkmaar PSV Eindhoven are not interested in Karlsson, Marcel Brands confirmed they can’t pay the price tag. https://t.co/GwxC72MwKz

According to The Sun, Manchester United are closely keeping tabs on Karlsson's development at the AFAS Stadion with the intention of signing him in the upcoming summer transfer window. Red Devils manager Erik ten Hag is a big admirer of the Swede, who is currently being scouted as a potential offensive competitor for Sancho's spot in their squad.

Karlsson, who has a contract until June 2026 at AZ, is valued at an affordable £14 million, as per data aggregator website Transfermarkt.

Sancho, on the other hand, has failed to justify his £73 million transfer fee since arriving from Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2021. He has missed the Red Devils' last 14 games, stretching back to October.

However, Sancho has returned to first-team training after spending an extended time out of action due to physical and mental health issues.

Jadon Sancho, finally back to training with Man United first team. Coaching staff and club feel Sancho is making positive progress, as reported by @AndyMitten @Muppetiers 🚨🔴 #MUFCErik Ten Hag mission is to have Sancho ready with the team in good condition soon. https://t.co/9MhczOAEJ9

Overall, the 23-cap England international has scored eight goals and laid out four assists in 52 appearances for Manchester United so far.

Manchester United could move for Ajax attacker in summer, claims journalist

Transfer insider Dean Jones claimed that promising Ajax forward Mohammed Kudus could be a transfer target for Manchester United in the upcoming summer. Speaking to Give Me Sport, he elaborated:

"I've been impressed with the fact that some of the names Ten Hag put to them, from almost day one, have done very well so far in this season, and Kudus is a player attracting attention from other clubs too, so he's definitely one player to look at for the summer."

Kudus, 22, has registered 10 goals and two assists in 22 appearances across all competitions for Ajax in a withdrawn forward role so far.

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Edited by Diptanil Roy
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