Manchester United are reportedly close to signing Lille central defender Gabriel Magalhaes for £27 million, according to The Sun. This is a good fee for a player of such a young age with prospects in the game. It was stated that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was seeking a left-footed central defender this summer to partner Harry Maguire, which is what Magalhaes could well be if these reports are true. However, just a headline then a sub paragraph with little other information makes it seem like poor journalism.
United have been linked to the Brazilian for little over a week with things developing quickly. That said, the information provided in the reports was always at a minimum. The player has had a medical with Everton earlier this year but the club had not concluded the transfer as they did not agree on a fee. United’s interest seems to have come forth out of nowhere but Arsenal’s interest still seems to be there. Obviously, the rumours have not come from nowhere but it is possible that they lead nowhere.
United do need to strengthen their defensive line this summer in order to move forward but the return of Chris Smalling has complicated matters. It was expected that the defender would play in AS Roma’s round of 16 clash in the UEFA Europa League this week but he was not named in the final squad for the tournament, which has to be confirmed on Monday evening. Whether the Italian club come forward with an acceptable offer for the player remains to be seen.
On Tuesday, The Metro reported that Arsenal have stepped up talks for the Brazilian, 22, which seemed to come from French source France Bleu Nord. It was stated that United, Everton and Napoli were all interested in the player. Napoli were said to be putting forward an offer €30 million (£27 million) after signing Victor Osimhen but the situation changed which led to Arsenal now making a move. It all seems strange that depending on your source of information, facts can be completely different. But I guess that is modern journalism.
It was confirmed that the representatives of Magalhaes were in England last week to talk to two clubs, what were reported to be United and Everton. If that was true, it could well be that United have won the race to sign the Brazilian as out of the three English clubs, United are the only one that will be playing in the UEFA Champions League next season, so that would be a deciding factor in a transfer this summer. Sorry Arsenal but small fry might miss out again.
Italian outfit Napoli Magazine has suggested that United have won the race for Magalhaes, which is not something that can be confirmed as an actual fact. However, it could turn into one in the right amount of time. Whilst the report is positive, the substance requires more for it to be suggested that United have indeed commenced to sign their first player this summer. Gerard Lopez, the owner of Lille, has recently suggested that the player will leave the club with The Sun reporting him as saying:
“With Gabriel, we are talking and we’ve given him an exit pass. He will choose his club this week.”
Written by John Walker