Manchester United are desperate to sign a forward in the January transfer window, but may have limited funds available to do so.
One of the potentially lowest budget options is Borussia Dortmund’s Youssoufa Moukoko.
The just-turned 18 year old is the latest on Dortmund’s seemingly endless conveyor belt of bright young talents, following in the footsteps of the likes of Jadon Sancho, Erling Haaland and Jude Bellingham.
However, for once the Bundesliga club may have been caught with their pants down as they have failed to tie Moukoko down to a long-term deal and his contract is set to expire in June, putting Europe’s elite on high alert.
Six goals and four assists in just 14 Bundesliga games this season – making him the youngest player in the league’s history to rack up 10 goals – is just one reason to be excited about a player who Haaland admitted was better than he was as a teenager.
Moukoko was also the youngest ever Bundesliga scorer at 16 and both the Bundesliga and Champions League’s youngest ever player.
According to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, Dortmund are still hoping to sign the player up to a new deal, “but timing is crucial, they’ve to act within December with good proposal.”
If a deal can’t be reached, the German club will almost certainly look to sell in January to avoid losing the starlet for nothing at the end of the season.
The price in such a case is hard to predict and would depend on whether a bidding war develops, with other Premier League and Spanish clubs also reportedly interested.
However, it is likely to be significantly less than those of some of United’s other mooted targets such as PSV’s Cody Gakpo and Benfica’s Gonçalo Ramos.
For United, therefore, the price point and timing could be very advantageous but on the other hand, Moukoko’s inexperience and age might count against him with the club needing someone who can hit the ground running this season at Old Trafford.
Gakpo probably therefore remains favourite to replace the outgoing Cristiano Ronaldo at United, but if PSV get too greedy over his valuation – which has reportedly doubled since before the World Cup – then United could very well turn to the German prodigy as a riskier, but potentially incredibly exciting alternative.