Newcastle have reportedly made a big for Genoa centre-back Radu Drăgușin, who has been hotly linked with a move to Manchester United.
As explained in greater detail here, Old Trafford officials are thought to be in “advanced negotiations” with the Serie A club for their talismanic defender, with a view to a move in January.
They reportedly view Drăgușin as the ideal candidate to solve the current injury crisis in Erik ten Hag’s defence, with United suffering from the continued absence of Lisandro Martinez.
The Red Devils have conceded thirty three goals in all competitions this season; a level of defensive weakness you would normally associate with a newly promoted side, not one hoping to challenge for major honours.
This has been felt most acutely in the Champions League where, despite promising displays and twelve goals scored in five games, United have let in fourteen goals. These porous performances have left the club on the verge of elimination from the competition.
As such, a player like Drăgușin, who has drawn comparisons to Nemanja Vidic, would represent a much-needed boost in January.
A report by TeamTalk indicates this move may now be in serious jeapoardy, however.
Relaying a story emanating from Italy, TeamTalk reveal Newcastle have reportedly made a £26 million bid for Drăgușin’s services.
The Romanian defender is said to have a €30 million release clause in his contract, meaning Newcastle’s bid matches this valuation.
The Premier League side have been interested in a central defender for a while now, having tried to agree a deal for Axel Disasi in the summer. The Frenchman instead chose to join Chelsea, however.
And given the injury problems first-choice defender, Sven Botman, has experienced this season, a new centre-back appears to remain high on Newcastle’s wish list.
With United’s financial capabilities in the January market remaining unclear as the protracted takeover saga continues to rumble on, they may be set to miss out on a key target to a fellow rival for Champions League qualification in a position of dire need.