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Galatasaray interested in Fred this summer with loan spell and option to buy touted

In the summer of 2018, Manchester United signed Brazilian midfielder Fred for £52 million from Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk. Fred’s current contract at the Old Trafford club will expire in the summer of 2023, although United have the option of adding a further year on. Despite arriving under the management of Jose Mourinho, which was short-lived for Fred, now under the management of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, he has only ever become a squad player at the club.

During the 2019/20 season, because of injuries to Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic and Scott McTominay, before the arrival of Bruno Fernandes during the January transfer window, Fred played a lot of football and started to build a period of form at the club. However, with Fernandes’ arrival and the return to fitness of Pogba, Matic and in some cases McTominay, Fred has seemed surplus to requirements at the club and the form he built was quickly depleted, which was a shame.

During the course of the season that was delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic, Fred made a total of 48 appearances in all competitions; Premier League, UEFA Europa League, Carabao Cup and the Emirates FA Cup, scoring two goals and four assists. In his time at United so far, the Brazilian midfielder has made a total of 73 appearances, scoring three goals and five assists – which is not all that great for a player that cost as much as he did. It is unlikely that United would see much of the fee they paid for the player two years ago.

Turkish outfit Fotomac has reported that Galatasaray are interested in signing Fred this summer, initially on a loan spell with the option to buy, which is probably the best that United would get for the player at this moment in time, if they are looking to end his stay with the club. Galatasaray manager Fatih Terim is desperate to sign a midfielder this summer after Southampton’s Mario Lemina and Fulham’s Jean Michael Seri both returned to their clubs following loan spells at the club.

Fred, 27, would be classed as an experienced player at the club but in terms of playing regularly, the likes of Fernandes, 25, Pogba, 27, Matic 32 and McTominay, 23, would all be ahead of him. That is before you even talk about Donny van de Beek, 23, who is linked to the Old Trafford club at this moment in time with United leading the race to sign the midfielder this summer. United are also linked to Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara, which could see Fred’s stay at United close to coming to an end.

If United were to sign Van de Beek this summer, it would be costly for Fred as the Dutchman would play more often than he would, as would Pogba, Fernandes and Matic. McTominay might also feature more than the Brazilian, especially if he recovers the form that saw him score a brilliant goal against Manchester City earlier this year in what was the last match to have supporters inside the stadium at the Theatre of Dreams. If this report is true, it could give a suggestion as to whether United are in fact interested in signing more than one midfielder this summer.

Written by John Walker

Eric Bailly offered to Turkish club Fenerbahce this summer with player seemingly unwanted

Manchester United central defender Eric Bailly has reportedly been offered to a number of clubs so far this summer with the latest being Turkish side Fenerbahce, who have had dealing with United in the past five years with Robin van Persie and Nani both signing for the club when they left the Old Trafford club. Just last week, Bailly was offered to AC Milan with the Italian club rejecting the opportunity to sign the Ivorian defender this summer.

The Sun has reported that United have now offered the 26-year-olf to Fenerbahce which makes it look like, despite starting against LASK and FC Copenhagen in the UEFA Europa League, his future at the club is going to be cut short. Whilst that does not seem fair, it has to be considered that the player’s injury record does not look all that great but Phil Jones should be out of the door before him. That said, Bailly’s contract will expire in the summer of 2022 with Jones’ contract expiring a year later.

This season, Bailly has made just 11 first team appearances, making one more in the Premier League 2 playing as one of the three overage outfield players in accordance with the rules at that level, playing jus 780 minutes of football in total this season. United have at least one more match to play this season, against Sevilla in the semi-final of the UEFA Europa League, which could lead to a further and final match of the season if the club reaches the final, which could be against either Inter Milan or Shakhtar Donetsk.

Since signing for United from Villarreal for £30 million during the summer of 2016, under the management of Jose Mourinho, Bailly has suffered four long-term injuries at the club; his first a knee injury seeing him miss eight matches during his debut season at the club. His second injury, a bruise, saw him miss five matches during the 2017/18 season, then suffering an ankle injury that same season, missing 21 matches. The player required knee surgery last summer, missing 28 matches for United, recovering over the Christmas period.

That injury record could stop United trusting the player moving forward. If Jones’ nine years at the club has shown anything, a player that suffers injury after injury is going to be a liability. Jones, who should be forced out of the club before Bailly, is out of action currently after playing just eight times this season. The former England defender has suffered 19 separate injuries in his time at United which has led to him missing 121 matches for the club – this is not ideal at all.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be itching to get his summer rebuild sorted with the aim of getting his squad ready for the new season, which is more than 30 days away – although those English teams still participating in European competition; United and Manchester City, will be granted a later start to the new Premier League season, giving their players a sufficient break before heading into another long season – hopefully not as long as this one, which still has another week and a few days to play.

Written by John Walker

Manchester United join Arsenal in race to sign Cengiz Under from AS Roma – reports

Manchester United and Arsenal are apparently interested in AS Roma winger Cengiz Under, according to reports. It is suggested that the Turkish winger could be available for just £27 million this summer. Both United and Arsenal need to reinforce their attack and for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, he could be a cut-price addition instead of Jadon Sancho.

The valuation of Borussia Dortmund’s winger will be £100 million, if not more this summer and the German club do not seem all that interested in reducing that, even with the coronavirus pandemic reducing the valuations of players all over the globe. I admire them for sticking to their guns, but if it was United doing that, there would be an uproar.

Italian news source Corriere dello Sport has reported that both United are the Gunners are interested in Under, reportedly for just £27 million this summer, which would be good business for both clubs, providing the player could cut it in the Premier League, which is unknown. United have been linked to many players already, so have some choices to make.

Roma signed Under, 22, from Basaksehir for just £12 million in 2017 with the player making just 20 appearances for the club this season, scoring three goals. That may not be seen as great by many but the player will be growing in stature at the club, but may also be out of favour considering the fact the club would be willing to sell him.

Since signing for Roma, Under has played a total of 85 times, scoring 17 goals and a further 12 assists. Sometimes, when clubs make under the radar signings, they have a 50/50 chance of working. Both United and Arsenal could do some good business in this regard but United supporters will always be seeking that marquee signing each summer, even now.

Daniel James arrived last summer for just £15 million from Swansea City. His season has not been the greatest but he has nearly matched, in one season, what Alexis Sanchez has offered United in 18 months, before his loan spell to Inter Milan. That would suggest that under the radar signings offer excitement in seeing a player grow.

Axel Tuanzebe wanted by Turkish side Besiktas but defender wants to fight for his place at Manchester United – reports

Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe is wanted on a season long loan spell by Turkish side Besiktas ahead of the summer transfer window opening. However, it is stated that the player would rather remain at United, fighting for his place at the club next season after spells on loan with Aston Villa inn recent seasons.

The 22-year-old has been used sparingly by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer this season, making a total of ten appearances for the club. However, the player has suffered two serious injuries this season, having a hip problem which saw him missing seven matches and a hamstring problem, missing 17 matches. If he was fit, he would have played more.

Turkish journalist Ertan Suzgun has suggested that Besiktas have identified the United academy graduate as a player that could strengthen the clubs defence next season, which is all well and good as he is a player that could do the same for United, if the likes of Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Marcos Rojo are sold by the club this summer.

Tuanzebe previously has loan spells away from United with Aston Villa, who are the time were in the Championship. He started with a six-month spell away from the club during the 2017/18 season, spending the 2018/19 season at the club, helping Villa win the play-off final and promotion to the Premier League, where they are relegation candidates this season.

This season, United have most of the time used Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof in the centre of the defence, but this has not been down to anything else other than a lack of players to choose from in rotation. Eric Bailly has suffered injury problems, Phil Jones is Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo has been at Estudianies since January.

If both Bailly and Tuanzebe had been fit, they would have had more minutes on the pitch at the club, meaning United would not have had to be so reliant on the likes of Lindelof and Maguire. If United sell Rojo, Smalling and/or Jones this summer, it could create more playing time for Bailly and Tuanzebe, which would be a good thing for both players.

Tuanzebe might, at some point in the future, if things are still the same at United, be forced to look elsewhere to be a regular starter in the team by at 22, he must know that it is not time to call an end to his United career. Showing patience as he will see the dilemma that manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will face, especially after continuing to clear the deadwood.

Rojo, Smalling and Jones are three players who have been at the club for some time, the Argentinian since 2014, Smalling since 2010 and Jones since 2011 – all three players have seemingly failed to be the clubs main starters in the past five years or so, despite the experience they all have as all three were full internationals.

Tuanzebe will be wise to look ahead into the future at what is likely to happen at the club. Rumours suggest United are seeing to sign a new defender, which cannot happen until the summer, so there is some likelihood that one, two or three players could be sold. Tuanzebe, if fit will have the remainder of the season to play himself into the managers plans for the future, which he is capable of doing.

Fenerbahce seeking to sign Manchester United defender on loan before the ​transfer window deadline

Manchester United defender Marcos Rojo is reportedly in talks with Turkish club Fenerbahce for a loan spell with the club. The 29-year-old is a player that United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to offload after his move to Everton broke down on deadline day. Turkish newspaper, Posta has reported the news, via Sport Witness.

The Turkish club signed Huddersfield Town defender Mathias Zanka last week with the club looking for another central defender. It was suggested that Fenerbahce was interested in signing Roma defender Aleksandar Kolarov as he could play as both a left-back and a central defender but the Italian club did not want to let him leave, hence the interest in Rojo.

Rojo still has two-years remaining on his contract, plus the option of a further year and instead of him having next to no playing time this season, the club would rather get him off the wage bill, on loan, at least until the next transfer window, whether it be in January or next summer, where Solskjaer will be seeking to sell the Argentinian once again.

The transfer window in Turkey does not close until the 2 September 2019, giving around three weeks before the closure of the window to get something sorted. Obviously, Rojo will want to be playing football regularly, which is something he may not get at United, even playing as an overage player in the U23 squad.

With the arrival of Harry Maguire this summer, Rojo’s minutes on the pitch will have been decreased considerably, even with the fact that Eric Bailly is out of action until Christmas because of a knee injury. Axel Tuanzebe will have also taken minutes off Rojo with his performances in pre-season and the fact Solskjaer wanted him to stay this summer.

It basically suggests that Rojo has, in effect, no future at the club. United have many central defenders at the club this season with Victor Lindelof, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling also, giving Solskjaer many players to choose from. Of course, Maguire and Lindelof were partners against Chelsea with Tuanzebe on the bench.

Even at left-back, which is a position Rojo has played many times, he does not seem to fit in as Luke Shaw seems to be the first choice in the position with Ashley Young and Diogo Dalot both able to play in that position and both seemingly ahead of Rojo in the pecking order. Solskjaer will probably see younger players ahead of Rojo in the pecking order.

Last season, Rojo made just six appearances for United; three under Jose Mourinho, starting twice and that under Solskjaer, starting once. He played a total of 256 minutes out of a possible 540 minutes. It was clear that he was a player who had lost his stature at the club. He did miss 20 matches through injury last season though.

Solskjaer obviously does not see a player like Rojo in his plans in which he wants to bring in younger players, preferably British players, to return the club to the glory days of old. It is very refreshing to see although getting rid of these players will be the tough option with them on good contracts with a high rate of pay each week.

Manchester United said to be ‘close’ to Stuttgart defender Ozan Kabak – reports

Manchester United are reportedly interested in VfB Stuttgart central defender Ozan Kabak this summer. If the reports are true, it would suggest that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is interested in strengthening the defence this summer, not only ar right-back. This does not look like a clean-cut transfer though as there is a lot of interest.

Stuttgart ended up being relegated last season and the 19-year-old Turkish defender has a €15 million release clause as part of his contract. Bayern Munich is interested in the player and reports suggest they could be the destination for Kabak. However, they have only held talks with Stuttgart for the player. United, Tottenham Hotspur, AC Milan and West Ham United also retain an interest in the player.

There have been reports coming from all over Europe which claims United’s interest in the player, however, there is a feeling that it could just be to ensure a quick decision is made and that the clubs actually interested in the player pay the money and get the deal across the line. If United is interested in the player, it could well be a timely deal, based on the clubs dithering in the transfer market so far.

Kabak is contracted with Stuttgart until the summer of 2024 but because of their relegation, as long as his release clause is met and the player has the desire to leave the German club, he can go. He only signed for the club, leaving Galatasaray, in January 2019. Last season, he played 17 times for the German club, scoring three goals. He also played 19 times for Galatasaray.

The 19-year-old can play at centre-back or in defensive midfield, which will be a bonus for the buying club, although he will probably play the majority of matches at centre-back. Bayern will be looking to replace Mats Hummels, who returned to Borussia Dortmund this summer, so for that reason could be in the driving seat. United are not said to be seeking to strengthen the central defence, or at least it has not been reported – but who knows?

Kabak is a player who is growing in stature and is available for a fee, which considering his age, would demonstrate good value in the market, especially is he grows in stature to a level which would consider him to be a world class defender inside the next few years. Solskjaer has seemingly changed the way the club is approaching the transfer window this summer with young talented players being sought. Could Kabak become a United player? Reports suggest the club is ‘close’ to the player, however, not every report is truthful. Watch this space.

copyright: JW