Manchester United’s capture of Mason Mount was always going to have some repercussions for existing first-team members due to the restrictive budget and the first domino seems to have fallen.
Laurie Whitwell of The Athletic reports that the club has made Fred available for a transfer for a fee of £20 million.
Fulham are reportedly interested as United try to negotiate major outgoings to supplement their transfer budget.
The Brazilian has been rendered expendable by Mount’s arrival, who is expected to become a crucial member of the first team immediately.
It would push Eriksen to be a rotational option, and as a byproduct, Fred will be pushed further down the order.
Combine that with his contract expiring next year, and his general unsuitability in Erik ten Hag’s system, it is clear to see why he has been put up for sale.
His interaction with Marcos Silva, the Fulham manager, after the last matchday of the season against the Cottagers was in the news as it was believed that the team was plotting a move for the midfielder.
It has proven to be true, although the £20m fee is likely to be a pipe dream for United.
As stated earlier, an expiring contract weakens United’s bargaining position. Furthermore, his wages, reported to be in the region of £120k/week, will also be prohibitive to the club receiving a fair fee.
United need to sell to buy more and that has been abundantly clear for weeks, opening the club up to potential fleecing by rivals, both in regards to buying and selling players.
It is likely that the club will negotiate a lower price with Fulham as all parties will be keen to get a deal done.
Thus, the chapter of Fred at United will come to a close in another bit of failed transfer business by the club. “Serviceable backup” is not a phrase which should be ideally associated with a £47 million player but that is exactly who Fred ended up being.