Manchester United have belatedly got their summer transfer window up and running but a lot of work remains to be done.
David de Gea’s impending departure has necessitated the signing of a top-class goalkeeper with Inter Milan’s Andre Onana the preferred target considering his exploits under Erik ten Hag during his Ajax stint.
But so far, the Serie A giants are holding out for €50m plus €10m in “not very complicated” variables while United are prepared to pay €45 million plus €5 in variables.
United’s striker chase hampered by budget restrictions
Budgetary constraints are also hampering United’s striker chase. Before the window began, it was clear where Ten Hag’s priorities lay after seeing his side struggle to get on the scoresheet despite the domination.
The Red Devils were the lowest scorers among the top seven teams in the Premier League with only Marcus Rashford scoring double digit goals in the league.
Such a scenario simply cannot be repeated and the 20-time English league champions were aiming to sign Tottenham record scorer Harry Kane considering his precarious contract situation.
Despite the England skipper’s wish to leave, Spurs chairman Daniel Levy has not such intention and has made it clear that he would prefer to sell to a foreign club rather than a domestic rival.
United’s focus shifted to Atalanta wonderkid Rasmus Hojlund after an impressive Serie A season where he scored 10 goals and registered four assists from 20 starts.
“Sources close to Atalanta indicate United made a first offer worth around €35m (£30m) for Hojlund last week, which was knocked back by the Serie A outfit, and a follow up bid of €48m (£41m) has also been rejected.
“Atalanta are asking for €75m-€80m (£64m-£69m) to consider selling at this stage. Previous reported demands of €100m to sell the player were not deemed serious by United.
“90min understands that United are not prepared to be held to ransom and are willing to go to €60m (£51.5m) but not much further to sign the player before the new season.”
Can United afford Rasmus?
Interestingly, the report mentioned that the player’s camp feels that United’s valuation is fair and the player himself is desperate to make the move to Manchester.
United currently have a limited budget and only player sales can help them in their quest to sign two more players. The club’s takeover process could also have aided them but so far very little progress has been made.
Hojlund only has one season of Serie A football under his belt and is still raw and Atalanta are desperately trying to earn as much as possible from the sale.
Most previous reports have pegged that Denmark international’s value to be around €45million and the Serie A outfit are trying to levy the dreaded United tax if this report is to be believed.
The report contradicts Corriere dello Sport’s claim that the price will be around “40-45, probably more toward 45, given that United have already had 35 rejected”.
However, it makes very little sense from a United perspective to bid as high as 90min claimed. Ten Hag initially wanted two strikers — one experienced and one young but that plan does not look close to being achieved.