Erik ten Hag must have thought Manchester United would have tied up a move for primary midfield target Frenkie de Jong by now. But the issue of deferred wages and the player’s unwillingness to move to Manchester has meant that the Dutch international remains a part of Barcelona’s books even though United have agreed a deal in principle.
With the Premier League season drawing nearer, the Dutch manager will need to figure out whether he will stick to his guns and opt to continue dialogue with De Jong or move on to other targets.
Man United's interest in Tielemans is genuine, too, and growing. He's a far cheaper and less complicated option than Frenkie de Jong. Erik ten Hag has put him on a midfield shortlist. Tielemans indicated under Ralf Rangnick he didn't want to move to #MUFC but ten Hag may revisit.
— Ben Jacobs (@JacobsBen) July 20, 2022
Leicester City’s Youri Tielemans is among the alternatives United have earmarked. And the Belgian is set to initiate showdown talks with manager Brendan Rodgers in order to figure out the way forward.
Arsenal are reportedly in pole position but United could jump in once the player decides what he wants. Arsenal have already signed one midfielder in Fabio Vieira.
Sky Sports reporter Dharmesh Sheth told the Transfer Talk Podcast, “One player that Arsenal have had a long-term interest in is Youri Tielemans.
“He has just one year left on his contract and we’ve been told that Tielemans will sit down with Brendan Rodgers this week to discuss his future, so far he’s refused any new deals with Leicester City.”
Tielemans a low-cost alternative
Due to having only a year left in his contract, the Foxes would not be liable to receive a huge fee. And a deal could be done for as little as as £25 million despite a value of €55 million as per transfermarkt.com.
The 2014-15 Premier League champions are not financially secure at the moment. According to The Telegraph, Leicester’s wages-to-turnover ratio is unsustainable and they need to sell players before they can sign new ones.
As reported previously, United’s interest in the Begium international is growing and as the De Jong impasse continues, there could come a point when United have no choice but to look at other targets.
(🌕) Leicester have to sell players before they can buy and Brendan Rodgers cannot make any moves until he has funds. The future of Youri Tielemans has dragged on all summer and needs sorting, or Leicester's transfer activity remains likely to be paralyzed. (@JPercyTelegraph) pic.twitter.com/D6SnsoiXFy
— Talking Highbury ✆ (@TalkingHighbury) July 21, 2022
United’s midfield options appear limited at the moment with Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba and Juan Mata all departing in the summer. Tielemans would represent an upgrade on the current options at the club.
However, so far Ten Hag has only indicated that he wants De Jong and only De Jong. He is even willing to promote a youth player if needs be. And that could suggest that United have not progressed on any other deals.
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