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Manchester United report: Red Devils eye bargain deal for ‘next Virgil van Dijk’

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Manchester United are hoping to take advantage of a contract stand-off between Barcelona and Ronald Araujo, according to reports.

The centre-back has been a rare bright spot for the Catalan club in an otherwise difficult first half of the season.

Barcelona view the Uruguay international as the cornerstone of their defence for years to come.

Araujo has just 18 months remaining on his deal and Barcelona have made little progress in persuading him to sign fresh terms.

The 22-year-old is keeping his options open for now and United could benefit from Barcelona’s well-documented financial issues.

According to El Nacional, Ralf Rangnick admires Araujo and could push for his signing in January or next summer.

The German has not been convinced by United’s current options at centre-back, with both Harry Maguire and Raphael Varane both struggling in Monday’s 1-1 draw with Newcastle.

Rangnick reportedly believes Araujo has all the attributes needed to thrive in the Premier League.

And the United head coach even believes he could have a similar impact to Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool and Ruben Dias at Manchester City.

Those two centre-backs set their respective teams on the path to the title, and Rangnick thinks Araujo could do similar at Old Trafford.

Barcelona will be loath to let him leave in January, but they could be forced to listen to offers next summer if the Uruguayan enters the final 12 months of his contract.

United would be willing to pay more than £30m for the 6ft 2in stopper, who has made 19 appearances for Barcelona this term.

The Red Devils return to action on Thursday night when Burnley visit Old Trafford.

United have taken seven points from a possible nine under Rangnick so far, but their performances have not always been convincing in that time.

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Transfer

Man Utd could agree fee to seal signing of £25million star

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Wolves were able to dominate and beat Manchester United in their own backyard last night and the Red Devils must act swiftly in the winter transfer window to improve the squad.

Midfield remains their weakest department and the latest reports suggest that Ralf Rangnick wants to hire the services of Swiss international Denis Zakaria.

As per Jonathan Shrager, the Old Trafford club have made contact to sign the play breaker, whose current deal with Borussia Monchengladbach will expire in the summer.

According to The Mirror, Man Utd have identified the 25-year-old as the top target for the January transfer window. It is claimed that big European clubs are interested in the Bundesliga star but Man Utd could agree to pay whatever fee required to beat the competition and seal his signing this month.

The famous British news source have claimed that the 40-capped international is rated at £25million. Monchengladbach would be really lucky if they can get £25million from his sale knowing that he can leave for nothing in six months.

Rangnick is looking for a versatile player in the center of the park and Mirror Sport claim that Zakaria fits the bill. Top teams need top defensive midfielders. In the Premier League, the likes of City, Liverpool and Chelsea are miles ahead of the rest and the trio have Rodri, Kante/Joringho and Fabinho respectively.

In the current campaign, the German club have so far struggled and they find themselves just two points above the relegation zone after 17 games. The former Young Boys holding midfielder has been out of form as well.

Have your say – Should Man Utd agree £25million fee to sign Denis Zakaria in the January transfer window?

 

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Man Utd plan talks to sign €20m sensation with 24 goals this year – report

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Manchester United plan to hold a meeting with Julian Alvarez’s agent ahead of a potential move for the Argentine, TyC Sports claims.

The 21-year-old is regarded as one of the best young forwards in Argentina. He has been exceptional for River Plate over the past 12 months.

Alvarez bagged 24 goals since the beginning of the year, and it appears United are keen on luring him to the Premier League.

Argentina outlet Ole recently claimed that United made an enquiry to River Plate. It is now reported that talks are planned with his representative.

Agent Fernando Hidalgo is due to travel to Europe to discuss with interested clubs next month. United are expected to discuss a potential transfer.

River Plate don’t have any plans of selling Alvarez. Any interested club will have to trigger the €20 million release clause on his contract.

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Man Utd transfer round-up: Erling Haaland given deadline as Napoli target Red Devils star

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Ralf Rangnick has not been impressed with what he has seen so far at Manchester United.

The interim German boss was not satisfied with performance levels in the narrow victory over Norwich and the Red Devils were even worse in the draw against Newcastle.

United are struggling to adapt to Rangnick’s ideas and were extremely fortunate to leave St James’ Park with a point on Monday evening.

On the evidence at Tyneside, Rangnick will struggle to reach the top four with his current squad, particularly given the form of London trio Arsenal, West Ham and Tottenham.

Rangnick is about to enter his first transfer window as manager and may feel additions are necessary to improve chances of Champions League qualification.

Here, Mirror Football rounds up all the latest transfer gossip surrounding Old Trafford.

Haaland decision deadline

Borussia Dortmund have reportedly set a deadline for striker Erling Haaland to make a decision on his future.

According to BILD, Dortmund have given Haaland until the end of February to decide whether he wants to leave the club.

Haaland is the most coveted player in world football and United are among a number of top clubs interested in signing him.

The Norwegian is believed to have a £68m buy-out clause in his contract that will become active after the summer transfer window in 2022.

Haaland already has 19 goals this term and United will have plenty of competitors should they seriously decide to pursue the forward.

Napoli target Tuanzebe

Napoli are said to be keen on a move for United loanee Axel Tuanzebe.

Tuanzebe, 24, is currently on a season-long loan at Aston Villa, where he has only managed nine starts.

And according to Gianluca di Marzio, Serie A side Napoli are already in talks to interrupt Tuanzebe’s loan in the Midlands.

Napoli boss Luciano Spalletti wants Tuanzebe to make the switch to Naples until the end of the season with an option to buy in the summer.

It is claimed that Tuanzebe’s versatility across a number of positions make him an exciting prospect for Spalletti.

Rangnick’s Henderson decision

Ralf Rangnick is set to block Dean Henderson’s loan request to leave Old Trafford in January.

That’s according to the Manchester Evening News, who claim the interim boss wants to have three ready and available first-team goalkeepers in his ranks.

Henderson, 24, has made just two starts all season after missing the early stages of the campaign through Covid-19.

David de Gea has since been a standout performer for the Red Devils and Henderson’s development has completely stalled.

Ajax and Tottenham are among the clubs said to be interested in Henderson, with Spurs targeting the England ‘keeper as a potential long-term replacement for Hugo Lloris.

But it looks like Henderson may have to remain at Old Trafford until at least the summer and Rangnick’s decision could leave the pair at ‘loggerheads’.

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