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Manchester United to rival Manchester City for £70 million French midfielder this summer?

Manchester United will reportedly rival Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City for Lyon midfielder Tanguy Ndombele this summer. Guardiola has made the 22-year-old his number one target and sees him as the long-term successor of Fernandinho. It has been suggested that £70 million might be the figure that interested clubs would need to spend to sign the Frenchman in the summer, which is a figure that City was not prepared to spend last summer with United signing Fred ahead of them.

United may have a big summer transfer window ahead of them which could right the wrongs from the previous ten windows in which United spent a lot of money, not actually buying the right players that the club needed to move forward. Ed Woodward seems to have been obsessed in bringing superstar players to the club, such as Angel Di Maria, who left, for a loss, a year later and now Alexis Sanchez, whose claim to fame at United is playing the piano, so far at least.

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Ndombele is contracted at Lyon until the summer of 2023, meaning that he has more than four years remaining, giving the French club the ability to ask for a big fee in compensation for losing that player, who could be on the road to stardom in the next few seasons. United currently have Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba, Fred and Scott McTominay as the experienced central midfielders at the club, whose contracts do not expire in the summer. Andreas Pereira and Ander Herrera will be free agents in the summer.

United allowed Marouane Fellaini to leave the club during the January transfer window, signing for Shandong Luneng in the Chinese Super League. Under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, United’s midfield has been Herrera, Matic, and Pogba most of the time with little rotation, meaning the trio could be suffering from fatigue. United have called upon Pereira, Fred and McTominay at times, them not eclipsing the form of the other trio, suggesting that United need to bring in players who suit the team better than these.

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If Herrera is not offered a new contract and ends up leaving the club as a free agent, it will mean that at least one new central midfielder will arrive at the club this summer, despite the fact that United will need an understudy for Matic, who is entering his twilight years and could do with a suitable rotation option who puts in a similar work rate and ethic as the Serbian. Ndombele could be a great fit in United’s midfield and aiming to sign him ahead of City should be something United get involved in.

However, having the Glazers at the club, who despite spending more than £700 million in the last six years, probably will not give much money ahead of a potential rebuild of the club, which is a scenario the club has been in since Sir Alex Ferguson retired. With the amount spent on players, United should be in a better state than they are right now, which shows how the management team in the boardroom is failing the club but earning a lot of sponsorship money which seems to be the priority of the club right now.

Manchester United to rival Spurs and Chelsea to sign Tanguy N’Dombele from Lyon – reports

Manchester United are set to continue spending this summer as Jose Mourinho seeks to assemble a squad capable of chasing down Manchester City to wrestle the Premier League title from Pep Guardiola’s side. The Old Trafford club have already signed Diogo Dalot and Fred, with several positions yet to be fortified ahead of the new season, which commences in early August, with the summer transfer window closing a day before the first Premier League fixture of the season.

One player currently attracting the attention of United, amongst others, is Lyon midfielder Tanguy N’Dombele. The Old Trafford club may need to contend with both Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea for the France U21 international, which will be available for £53 million this summer. Le10 Sport has reported that Lyon, who only signed N’Dombele on a permanent basis earlier this summer, after a loan spell from Amiens SC which cost €2 million, plus an €8 million option to purchase the player. Lyon could be set for a windfall if this report is factual.

N’Dombele has been likened to N’Golo Kante and impressed for Lyon in 47 appearances throughout all competitions last term. It is suggested that Ander Herrera could be shown the door at the Theatre of Dreams this summer if United do sign the 21-year-old, or indeed any other player. The Spaniard is a target for former club Athletic Bilbao and there is reportedly a €30 million offer on the table, which could also see Herrera as the highest paid player at the club.

Mourinho would need to beat both Spurs and Chelsea to the 21-year-old this summer, which could be a big task. It is reported that Spurs has already made a bid of £35 million for N’Dombele this summer, which has been rejected by Lyon, also Chelsea, who may need to replace Kante this summer, would need a replacement with the Frenchman linked to Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea seemingly needing to sell in order to buy new players in a turbulent summer which could see a new manager at Stamford Bridge.

The Manchester Evening News has reported that Mourinho is seeking a young box-to-box midfielder this summer, despite already signing Fred, of which the transfer was completed on Thursday afternoon with United making the announcement. This report, paired with Mourinho’s pursuit of N’Dombele could suggest another signing could be forthcoming with United resigned to losing Marouane Fellaini on a free this summer, with his contract expiring in eight more days (after today).

Last season, N’Dombele made 47 appearances for Lyon, three for Amiens before leaving on loan. He scored once, assisting seven times for his club whilst playing in Ligue 1, the UEFA Europa League, the Coupe de France and the Coupe de la Ligue. The 21-year-old can play in a number of positions, including; central midfield, defensive midfield and as a right midfielder, so it would give Mourinho some different options if he did arrive at the Theatre of Dreams this summer.

N’Dombele has many strengths, including; playing key passes, dribbling with the ball and playing through balls to attacking players. His playing style seems interesting too with the Frenchman’s love of dribbling with the ball, despite getting fouled often, added to his ability to play short passes, which is something that he could improve upon at United with the masses of experience in the midfield currently. Mourinho obviously sees the midfield as something that needs strengthening this summer.

Added to Nemanja Matic, Fred, Paul Pogba, Scott McTominay, Herrera and even Andreas Pereira and Timothy Fosu-Mensah, N’Dombele could find himself with a fight on his hands for matches but the lure of a big club such as Manchester United could be something that the player will know is not going to mean he will automatically play each and every match at the club. There must be a will to improve and to do that, you need to learn and fight for your place in a team, winning a starting place and excelling in your game.

Obviously, this is just another player linked to the Old Trafford club this summer, of which there have been many linked previously. It could suggest that United are unwilling to match Lazio’s demands for Sergej Milinkovic-Savic this summer, despite United’s social media fan base directing the manager to make the Serbian the number one target this summer. Whilst the Serbian seems to be a good midfielder, the question of whether he can excel in a team alongside Pogba is a worry, especially for the fee he would command.

copyright: JW