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At just £25 million, here’s why Toby Alderweireld should be a signing Manchester United should consider this summer

Manchester United’s bid to find a central defender who could add some steel to the defence this summer seems to be failing. The Old Trafford club has targeted Kalidou Koulibaly of Napoli and Harry Maguire of Leicester City have been the players hotly linked to the club this summer but so far, nothing seems close to happening.

Koulibaly is not likely to leave Napoli this summer, being that the club has brought in Kostas Manolas, a world class defender to strengthen their defence. United’s pursuit of Maguire seems to have gone south after that £70 million bid, which was rejected, with the club now seeking £80 million or more. Last summer, Maguire could have been United’s.

There is one option sitting there in plain sight, a cheap option, which may not be one for the future, more for now. £25 million would secure that transfer but there are some conditions. Toby Alderweireld of Tottenham Hotspur. He’s 30 but a Premier League proven player. A player of many standards. A player that would strengthen United’s ailing defence.

It has been stated by Kristof Terreur, a journalist for Het Laatste Nieuws, that Alderweireld has that £25 million release clause in his contract this summer but it will expire 14 days before the closure of the Premier League transfer window, meaning United, or whoever, have just under a fortnight to get something sorted.

There is even footwork for a deal to be struck. Yes, £25 million will need to be paid but Terreur states that it is a figure that could be paid in instalments, even over a two-year period – no longer. Surely that would suggest that it is something United should at least be looking into. Alderweireld was a player wanted by Jose Mourinho and the club last summer and even many journalists thought i was happening.

Last season, in the Premier League alone, United conceded a total of 54 goals. It was their worst season, at least defensively, in the top-flight since the 1978/79 season. That is another record that has been broken post-Sir Alex Ferguson that the club should not be proud of. The thing is that United cannot head into another season with Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo, Eric Bailly and Victor Lindelof as the main defenders.

Last season, Lindelof was the best defender at the club, making a massive difference from his debut season, where he seemed out of place. Bailly has regressed considerably and suffers many injuries and is rash on the ball. Jones and Smalling have not really kicked on in the last six years and them getting new contracts was worrying. Rojo just does not fit into the club at this moment in time.

United have some youth players they could turn to, in order to strengthen the defence. Axel Tuanzebe had a good season on loan at Aston Villa, which could see him in with a chance and Tim Fosu-Mensah can play as a central defender, even in the defensive midfield. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has options but he needs a leader in the team. Right now, that is something not present and someone will need to stand up and be counted, being there 100% of the time to lead, not hide.

Spurs seem to have offered Alderweireld to Roma as part of a deal to sign Nicolo Zaniolo, so it suggests they do not necessarily want him to continue at the club this coming season. He is out of contract in a year, so Spurs could make money on him this summer only. The player also seems content right now, getting stuck into pre-season training, getting ready for the upcoming season, which could see him remain at Spurs or elsewhere.

During his career, in which the 30-year-old has played for Ajax, Atletico Madrid, Southampton and Spurs, he’s played a total of 395 matches, scored 24 goals, assisted 15 goals, playing 33,910 minutes of football. Over the last few seasons, he’s suffered two major injuries; a knee injury in the 2016/17 season, in which he missed nine matches and a hamstring injury in the 2017/18 season, in which he missed 29 matches.

That could be a worry with Alderweireld or any other player. Solskjaer might have plans to do things another way, looking for talented youth and building a team, which may take a few years but would get better results and show the players the way this club works, which has not been very prevalent over the past six years with United spending more than £700 million under David Moyes, Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho.

Many of the players not working out, some still at the club today. There are no guarantees that United are in fact interested in Alderweireld but with the figure quoted for Maguire and the fact they have little chance signing Koulibaly, he is certainly an option but just not one for the future. At 30, he might have two to three years left at the top level of football, maybe longer.

It would be a gamble, but a relatively cheap gamble, considering more has been lost by the club buying and selling Angel Di Maria, loaning Radamel Falcao and buying Bastian Schweinsteiger, on signing the German, Ed Woodward actually said: “When people see Schweinsteiger on the team sheet, that’s gonna send some shivers down the spine.” It makes you wonder what goes through Woodward’s mind – no knowledge of football, anyway.

Toby Alderweireld on his way to Manchester United – reports

Manchester United are reportedly close to signing Tottenham Hotspur defender Toby Alderweireld which could be worth £60 million. Simon Mullock of The Mirror has reported that the deal could be just days away with United linked to the Belgian defender for more than a few months. At the end of the season, it was expected that Alderweireld would be the main target for United this summer and a move was suggested ahead of the FIFA World Cup, of which Belgium came third, beating England 2-0 in the third-place play-off.

However, remembering that it was Daniel Levy that United were dealing with, it was unlikely to be a quick deal between the two clubs. United had reportedly offered £55 million for Alderweireld and Spurs seemingly wanted £75 million, which was the highest amount reported in the media this summer, presumably because Virgil van Dijk signed for Liverpool for that figure when he left Southampton. However, it was reported that United were £20 million short of an offer with Spurs likely to dig in their heels, which is what they have done.

Alderweireld is into the final year of his contract but has a clause in his contract which could be activated at any time, as most United players after 2013 also have inserted into their contracts. The Belgian defender has rejected a new deal with Spurs, who will play at their new stadium where White Hart Lane once stood in about a months time, and was reported to have suggested that he wanted to sign for United and was willing to ensure that happened, whether it was this summer, in January or next summer.

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If Spurs activated the one-year option on his contract, there would be a £25 million clause which if activated, would mean the player could leave Spurs. However, reports conflicted as to whether it meant he could leave immediately for that figure, if it was activated in the current transfer window, which would be unlikely, or whether it would be from the next transfer window in January, which was a much more likely scenario. If these reports are true, and I do hope they are, the £60 million fee is just a little bit more than the £55 million reportedly offered earlier in the year.

Last summer, United were after Ivan Perisic and it was suggested that £5 million was the difference in signing the player and missing out on him, which United opting for the latter. The Mirror state that a deal for Alderweireld could be done in the next 48 hours, which is a term used for most transfers and a timescale that does come and go, often with nothing happening in that timeline. United have been linked with Harry Maguire and Yerry Mina in the past few weeks, with reports about the latter close to signing possibly being a smokescreen unless United are interested in him too?

Alderweireld was impressive in the World Cup this summer, which is a good sign after injury and a contract standoff both taking its toll on the Belgian defender last season, which saw Jan Vertonghen and Davinson Sanchez as Mauricio Pochettino’s preferred central defensive partnership. United have Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly, both of whom arrived under Mourinho in the last two summer’s, added to Phil Jones and Chris Smalling as the experienced central defenders. United also have Marcos Rojo, but reports suggest he could be on the move this summer also.

Manchester United and Spurs still far apart in the valuation of Toby Alderweireld

There have been lots reported about Manchester United’s supposed interest in Tottenham Hotspur defender Toby Alderweireld throughout the summer. Because of the FIFA World Cup, and the fact Belgium came third in the tournament, the lack of any development could have been rather telling. However, with United’s interest in Leicester City defender Harry Maguire, despite the supposed £65 million valuation attributed by the media, the reports linking Alderweireld to the Old Trafford club have surfaced once again.

Sky Sports News have reported that their understanding on the prospective deal is that United are interested in the 29-year-old Belgian this summer and Spurs want in excess of £50 million to let the player leave the club this summer. In the weeks running up to the World Cup, there were suggestions of a £70-75 million fee being placed on the player, which seems to have now been changed to ‘in excess of £50 million’. Alderweireld has a year left on his current contract, along with a clause to add another year also having a £25 million release clause, which comes into effect in 2019.

Obviously, with United seeking a new central defender to command in the position, the move makes sense, as long as both clubs agree on a deal. However, with Spurs being difficult to negotiate with, seeking other targets add a bit of realism to the prospective deal. United seem to have gone nowhere since before the World Cup to now, two weeks after it finished and despite various defenders being linked to the club, there still seems to be some interest in Alderweireld, based on the fact United have not moved on to sign another player.

Maguire is reported by the media as being interested in moving to United but will not agitate a move and Leicester are saying the player is not for sale. Whether anything moves on from that stance remains to be seen but there are just 13 days of the transfer window remaining after today. With Anthony Martial’s agent stating that the Frenchman wanted to leave the Theatre of Dreams this summer and the fact he’s reported to want to remain in the Premier League, Spurs’ interest of the player could have seen a move developing. However, United will only sell him to a club abroad.

It is said that United to now meet Spurs’ valuation of Alderweireld, not with a year remaining on his contract, unless maybe Spurs activate the additions year which had already been agreed on the signing of his current contract. Alderweireld is expected to be on holiday until the first full week of August, meaning any move could happen in the remaining few days of the transfer window, which would be right, knowing how United seem to do their transfer business. Alderweireld could also sign a new contract at Spurs, which as Sky reported, seems increasingly unlikely.

I am sure United will have had many targets for various positions this summer, seemingly not putting all their eggs in one basket, which has been the case in previous summer transfer windows. A club the size of United would learn from things like that, right? The reported approach for Maguire would suggest United had other targets, many of whom could have been involved in the World Cup this summer, meaning they are only just returning from holiday, or still yet to return. There seems to be no quick way of solving this, other than to wait and see for now.

Manchester United not fully keen on Toby Alderweireld with seven other names on the shortlist

Manchester United have been linked with a move for Tottenham Hotspur defender Toby Alderweireld this summer but talks have recently his a stalemate with United’s valuation of £55 million being towered by Spurs’ £75 million valuation of the player. In a years time, because of a clause in the player’s contract, he could leave the North London club for just £25 million, which makes anything over United’s valuation of the player to be money not spent well. Because of this, it is reported that United a list of other players to seek to sign this summer instead of the Belgian.

The Manchester Evening News has reported that United have a list of eight central defenders, with the aim of one of them being signed by Jose Mourinho’s team. Despite the headlines dominating with reports that Alderweireld is the main target, it has been suggested that United’s scouts are not 100% sure on the Belgian because of his profile, whatever that means – it could be a number of things. Despite the Spurs man being experienced in the Premier League, United seem to be looking further afield with players from the Bundesliga, La Liga and Serie A on the list.

United have already commenced their business in the summer transfer window completing the signing of Diogo Dalot in a €22 million deal from FC Porto last Wednesday and a day before that announced a deal with Shakhtar Donetsk over Brazilian midfielder Fred, although he has not yet been confirmed as a United player. It has shown that United were eager to get players in ahead of the pre-season tour of the United States of America and Germany, despite some players seemingly unavailable for some or all of the tour because of the FIFA World Cup in Russia.

It has been reported that United’s seven other options, other than Alderweireld are; Raphael Varane, Jerome Boateng, Kalidou Koulibaly, Milan Skriniar, Alessio Romagnoli, Jose Gimenez and Caglar Soyuncu. However, it is also suggested that any of these prospective deals would be the club’s most complicated transfer this summer. Below you will find a short profile of the players which will include their age, current club, strengths, weaknesses and what I feel would be the chances of United signing the player, based on my own opinion and what is being reported in the media.

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Raphael Varane

The French international, 25, was signed by then Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho for a fee of around €10 million in 2011. Varane has completed his seventh season at the La Liga club, playing a total of 233 times, scoring 10 goals. He has also played 42 times for France, scoring twice. Despite being a peripheral figure in Madrid, Varane is a player United have been linked to summer after summer. Mourinho will rate him highly, signing him seven years ago, and would obviously be interested should the player seek a future away from Real Madrid. However, Varane has won his fourth UEFA Champions League winner’s medal in five years, winning 15 major honours with the club, so to pry him from the clutches of Madrid would be difficult. Varane is a strong passer and has an immense concentration of the game, however, tackling is a problem for him at times.

Likelihood of completing this signing: 5/10

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Jerome Boateng

The 29-year-old German international has played in the Premier League before, spending the 2010/11 season at Manchester City. Costing €13.5 million that summer, after the frustration of playing predominantly at right-back, Boateng is a player that City may regret losing, based on his career after leaving the Etihad. Boateng has played 258 times for Bayern Munich, scoring eight goals in his career which started in Germany at Hertha Berlin, playing in the reserve side, then the first team before signing for Hamburger SV, before joining City. In seven seasons at Munich, Boateng has won the Bundesliga six times, in succession from the 2012/13 season onwards. He’s won 14 major honours with the Bavarian club, also winning the FA Cup at City. Internationally, Boateng has played 71 times for Germany, scoring one goal. He helped the U21 side lift the European Championships in 2009, winning the FIFA World Cup in 2014. Boateng is similar to Varane in that his passing and concentration are both strengths but tackling is seen as a weakness. The player is said to be considering his future this summer, which could mean a new challenge is on the horizon.

Likelihood of completing this signing: 6/10

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Kalidou Koulibaly

The Senegalese international is just 26 and seen as a huge prospect in the game. Born in France, playing for Metz, moving to Genk in Belgium, now playing for Napoli in Italy, Koulibaly is experienced, despite not yet playing in the Premier League. The player has been linked to United previously, albeit not all that credibly. The player has completed his fourth season in Italy, playing a total of 164 times for Napoli, scoring eight goals. He has won two major honours in his career; the Belgian Cup with Genk in the 2012/13 season and the Supercoppa Italiana with Napoli in 2014. Koulibaly is 6ft 5in, physically strong, recognised for his aerial prowess, passing ability, and versatility. Koulibaly would be my first choice after Alderweireld to come to United. The African Cup of Nations would normally be a problem bringing African players to the Premier League but as the tournament has been switched from January/February to June/July from 2019, it is no longer an issue that United would lose players at an important part of the season. His reported price tag, if true, could be a problem.

Likelihood of completing this signing: 5/10

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Milan Skriniar

The 23-year-old Slovakian has been linked to United previously and it was reported recently that both United and City made a £53 million bid for the Inter Milan player, both of which were turned down. After a sensational season at the San Siro, helping his team return to the UEFA Champions League, beating Lazio on the final day of the season, it would see the club want to retain the player, or at least sell him for a large fee if they have to. United has been unsuccessful when dealing with Inter, seeking to sign Ivan Perisic from the club last summer, which did not materialise. Unless a record bid is received by Inter, I doubt Skriniar will be leaving the club. He is a good prospect, one for now and the future, and one which many of Europe’s biggest clubs have been watching. He’s played 40 matches for Inter, scoring four goals so far, also playing 18 times for his country. Skriniar is a strong passer and a player whose concentration is impeccable. A real asset for any club and so far, only Inter can be the victors, whether it be by keeping the Slovakian or selling him for a huge profit from the €20 million paid to Sampdoria last summer.

Likelihood of completing this signing: 3/10

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Alessio Romagnoli

The 23-year-old AC Milan defender may not be as experienced as other players in this article, but he is one that other clubs have been linked with already this year. Coming through the youth ranks at Roma, Romagnoli has completed the sixth season of his career so far. He has played 111 times for Milan, scoring five goals. He was linked to United, Chelsea, and Barcelona in February with Milan seemingly likely to offer him a new contract to deter all three clubs from being able to make a deal to sign the player. Barcelona seem to be out of the action with Samuel Umtiti signing a new contract and Clement Lenglet on their radar. Romagnoli is strong at holding on to the ball, passing, aerial duels and concentration, however, his weaknesses include; crossing, discipline, and tackling. He could compliment a player who has discipline and tackling though, so that is not to put anyone off the player. He is highly rated in Italy and has played seven times for his country.

Likelihood of completing this signing: 5/10

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Jose Gimenez

The 23-year-old Uruguayan currently plays for Atletico Madrid since signing for them for a €900,000 fee in 2013. Gimenez has been linked to United many times, the last in November 2017 when it was suggested that the player had been given the all clear to make the move, seemingly rejecting United, according to the media. We see stories like that all the time, there is nothing to suggest the player rejected United, or that United made a move to sign the player. Gimenez has played 113 times for Atletico, scoring six goals. He is experienced in the fact this was his sixth season as a first team player. He has also been a mainstay in the Uruguay national side, playing 42 times, scoring five goals. Gimenez has won three major honours at Atletico, winning La Liga in the 2013/14 season, lifting the Supercopa de España in 2014 and winning the UEFA Europa League last season. He is also a runner-up twice in the UEFA Champions League, losing to Real Madrid both times. The player has two years remaining on his current contract.

Likelihood of completing this signing: 5/10

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Caglar Soyuncu

The 22-year-old Turkish defender has been strongly linked to Arsenal this summer with the media adding United recently. Turkish Football wrote about the player in February, suggesting three reasons as to why he could be a success at United, so there must have been some interest in the past for the young international. Soyuncu started his career at Altınordu in Turkey and was linked to Besiktas, Galatasaray, and Sevilla before moving to Freiburg. He has been linked to Lille, Roma, Villarreal, Manchester City and Arsenal since playing in the Bundesliga. Soyuncu has played for Turkey at U18, U19, U20, and U21 international level, also playing 15 times for the senior side. After two seasons in the Bundesliga, playing 55 matches and scoring one goal, this summer could be a big one for the young Turkish player. Soyuncu possesses leadership qualities, something United may be interested in, is a good playmaker, dribbler, also being strong in the air. He is a strong defender, a player that admires Jose Mourinho and despite being 22, has experience and longevity in the game. Not all the best players in the world play for big teams.

Likelihood of completing this signing: 6/10

Toby Alderweireld hints at Spurs exit but suggests he has no control over his destination

Manchester United transfer target Toby Alderweireld has suggested that he has no control over his future this summer, also admitting that Spurs have different ideas about where he should be next season. The Belgian international has been linked to the Old Trafford club since the end of the season after talks about a renewal with the North London club seemingly hit a snag. Alderweireld missed around five months last season through injury and has been considering his future.

The 29-year-old is arguably one of the best central defenders in the Premier League and with United seeking more security at the back ahead of the new season, where they will need to challenge Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City in a bid to wrestle the Premier League title from them, with United seemingly waiting six years to lift the trophy they last lifted under the tenure of Sir Alex Ferguson, who retired at the end of the 2012/13 season.

Alderweireld returned to fitness at the right time, playing a few times for Spurs at the end of the season and also booking his place in the Belgium squad for the FIFA World Cup in Russia this summer. He also played 90 minutes in the 0-0 draw with Portugal at the weekend, which will be good stead for him ahead of the competition and a possible busy summer for the veteran defender. Speaking to Belgian newspaper, de Zontag, Alderweireld spoke about Spurs controlling his future, saying:

“I have another two years contract, so Tottenham decide about my future. Of course, I have my own idea, but that is not the case now. The past season was tough, but I’m glad that I could play the last four matches. That means that I am ready for the World Cup.”

United were linked with an early move for Alderweireld of which was touted to be worth around £55 million and speculation continued to be reported. However, on Monday, it was stated that neither Spurs or United were involved in discussions for the Belgian at this stage of the summer. With the World Cup starting in nine days, it seems unlikely that United, if they are interested in signing Alderweireld, would be able to get a deal across the line before Belgium embark on their trip to Russia.

United will need to secure their back line this summer. It was suggested that Jose Mourinho would strengthen the right-back, left-back and central defender roles, along with the midfield, two central midfielders needed and a possible attacking player to play on the right-wing. United announced earlier today that a deal had been agreed to sign Fred from Shakhtar Donetsk and they seem to be close to completing a deal with FC Porto for 19-year-old right-back Diogo Dalot, who will reportedly have a medical at the club this week.

Manchester United willing to spend £55m on Toby Alderweireld this summer…

Manchester United are reportedly seeking a deal with Tottenham Hotspur for Belgian central defender Toby Alderweireld this summer. The deal is said to be worth around £55 million. Last week reports materialised stating United’s interest in the player with the reports suggesting a deal could be worth £40 million. The Manchester Evening News reported this news earlier on Monday. There is obviously going to be a lot of clickbait this summer but my opinion is that a player such as Alderweireld would be needed at United this summer.

It is suggested that this deal if it does happen, would be the most expensive back line addition at the club, which Jose Mourinho is not yet convinced by. In the last two summers, Mourinho has spent £30 million on Eric Bailly and the same amount on Victor Lindelof – the latter has had a season of settling in, has been linked by the media as being a player who could be loaned out next season, which could be the season he is judged on, whether at United or on loan. United are also said to be interested in a right-back and a left-back.

Spurs are resigned to losing Alderweireld this summer after the 19-year-old announced that he would not be signing a new deal at the club – who will embark on a new journey next season, playing in a new stadium where White Hart Lane once stood. In a year’s time, if Alderweireld remained at Spurs, a clause in his contract would be activated which could see him leave the club for £25 million, a steal of a deal for a player considered the best defender in the Premier League. Spurs will want to sell him for a high fee this summer though.

Spurs are said to be keen to offload Alderweireld, along with Vincent Janssen, Fernando Llorente, Moussa Sissoko, and Danny Rose, a player who has been linked to United several times over the last year or so. Mauricio Pochettino challenged Spurs chairman Daniel Levy to be ‘brave’ this summer, investing in a new squad which could achieve something at their new home. Although they have qualified for the UEFA Champions League three years running, a trophy has evaded them for a decade now. Pochettino said:

“We need to talk a lot between us and the club. I think I have a very clear idea of what we need to do. I don’t know if the club will agree with me or not, but we are going to talk next week to create what I think we need to do together again, to try to improve.

“That is a little bit up to Daniel and the club, of course, to agree with us because, after four years, I think we need to assess that period if we want to compete for big, big trophies. I think all that we achieved until today is fantastic but it will be so important to create again.

“The club’s ambition is always to win but it is not easy to find the way. I think it is so important that we are going to move to the new stadium, but not only that is going to make us close to winning.

“I think they’re going to listen to me, of course, but sometimes I have some crazy ideas. But you need to be brave in this kind of situation, in our club with our unbelievable fans, and take risks. I think it’s a moment for the club to take risks and try to be competitive.”

Alderweireld has been sidelined for three months this season due to a hamstring injury but despite being fit, Pochettino overlooked the player in the latter stages of the season. Despite being 29, Alderweireld would be a great signing for United. He is proven in the Premier League, experienced at both club and country levels and has been picked as part of the Belgium squad for the FIFA World Cup this summer, so could be a player for United supporters to feast their eyes on, amongst others.

Having a player with the qualities Alderweireld would bring to the Theatre of Dreams would be worth the money and the stability a signing such as his would bring to United’s defence. Having Eric Bailly and Victor Lindelof is great and a year ago the prospect of the pair being at United was touted as a Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand type partnership. That has not worked as well as it could have. The future of Chris Smalling and Phil Jones, either one of them of both, will most likely be up in the air this summer as the pair have failed at times, one more than another.

Manchester United ‘reportedly confident’ of signing Toby Alderweireld this summer

Manchester United are reportedly confident of signing Toby Alderweireld from Tottenham Hotspur this for £40 million. It has been reported by the Evening Standard that Spurs will agree to sell the Belgian defender this summer after failing to agree on new terms with the 29-year-old. It is said that Alderweireld could leave the North London club in a years time for just £25 million, which is something the club wanted to stop from happening. Selling him this summer will stop that.

It has been suggested that the Old Trafford club are ready to tempt Spurs with a £40 million offer for Alderweireld, a player who would bring solidity to the clubs defence, something which has been lacking this season, which I think has a lot to do with the cautious approach in Jose Mourinho’s style of play. Having a defence that can be relied upon is what top managers will want and at United, despite having many decent players, the lack of some being fit for the entire season is a problem.

Spurs are said to be after Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt with the 18-year-old said to command a transfer fee of around £50 million. Spurs held talks with Alderweireld earlier this season and they broke down after the Belgian failed to agree on new terms. It is suggested that Spurs offered the player £120,000 per week, which is considerably higher than the £50,000 per week the player is believed to currently earn at the club. There have been other clubs interested in Alderweireld with Chelsea, Paris Saint-Germain, and Barcelona all credited with an interest.

Chelsea may have more interest in Newcastle United defender, Jamaal Lascelles with PSG more likely to contend with United for the Belgian’s signature this summer. United are said to be interested in offering Alderweireld a long-term contract, which could see him remain at the Theatre of Dreams into his mid-30s, which would be beneficial with the club not having many experienced central defenders with Chris Smalling and Phil Jones the most experienced at the club currently.

United does not have the best of relationships with Spurs chairman, Daniel Levy, which is something that could put PSG into the driving seat for Alderweireld this summer. Some sources in the report suggest that United will prioritise the signing of a winger and a central midfielder ahead of Alderweireld this summer, with United having six central defenders with Smalling, Jones, Marcos Rojo, Eric Bailly, Victor Lindelof and Daley Blind, the latter expected to leave the club this summer.

Mourinho was interested in signing Alderweireld in 2015 for Chelsea, so could still retain an interest in the player, especially after criticising his defence at various stages this season, which is something the majority of supporters agree with. United finished the Premier League season with the second-best defence, conceding one more goal than champions Manchester City, but that does not mean the defence has been magnificent as David De Gea has put in shifts on many occasions this season, winning his first Premier League Golden Glove of his career.

Mourinho will have some work to do this summer in order to assemble a squad which will contend with Manchester City in the Premier League next season. It has been suggested that the manager will be seeking a right-back, a left-back, a central defender, at least one central midfielder (two if Marouane Fellaini leaves the club) and despite suggesting he would not sign an attacking player, United do have a need for a winger on the right, which is something that has also been speculated ahead of the summer transfer window.

It was confirmed on Monday that the transfer window will open on Thursday 17th May 2018 with the closure to come before the new Premier League season starts. With the FIFA World Cup also happening this summer, it may see United make some early moves ahead of the World Cup with some players the club has been credited with an interest in not being called up for their respective countries, some not playing in the tournament this summer due to their countries not qualifying.

copyright: JW