Manchester United setting up a big summer of spending
After finishing 19 points behind Manchester City in the 2017-18 title race and ending the season without any silverware, it looks like the Old Trafford hierarchy will be opening the chequebook during the next couple of months, as manager Jose Mourinho seeks to bolster his Manchester United squad with several quality additions.
Clear that a number of quality reinforcements are needed in defence, midfield and attack, the United boss is keen to lock down moves for key players on his summer shopping list. Valued at 7/1 in Premier League betting odds for the 2018-19 title, swiftly completed deals over the next few weeks could see those odds slashed, depending on how the Red Devils fare in the transfer market.
According to transfer news reports in the Manchester Evening News, the first deals of the summer could be concluded in a matter of days. Despite having a release clause of £17.5m in his contract with FC Porto, 19-year-old Diogo Dalot is likely to be signed for around £19m. The young right-back is due for a medical and the club will want to check on his recovery from a recent knee injury before concluding any business with the Portuguese side.
Brazil midfielder Fred is expected to have a medical at Man United before completing his switch to Old Trafford for a reported £52m.
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) June 3, 2018
Meanwhile, having participated as a substitute for Brazil in their 2-0 win against Croatia at Anfield this weekend, 25-year-old midfielder Fred will sign for Man Utd in a deal worth £52m according to TalkSport. The player was undergoing a medical at Carrington on Monday 4th June, with his personal terms and a transfer deal already agreed with Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk, in what looks to be a sound piece of business following the retirement of Michael Carrick.
Given those two signings appear to be pretty much done and dusted, save for a few formalities, United fans will inevitably be wondering about further additions, hoping for a couple of big moves that will make a real statement of intent, ahead of the 2018-19 campaign. Of course, there have been several high-profile players linked with interest of late.
Topping the headlines recently in both England and Spain was speculation that Mourinho has urged his club to make a bold move for Gareth Bale, following comments from the Welsh international which cast doubts on his future at Real Madrid. In a flash interview moments after his match-winning display in the Champions League final victory against Liverpool, the 28-year-old hinted it could be time to move on.
One week ago right now Gareth Bale did this 🚲 pic.twitter.com/ffD0lNSqnm
— B/R Football (@brfootball) June 2, 2018
Mourinho apparently also seems intent on luring Cristiano Ronaldo back to Old Trafford, after Spanish outlet DiarioGOL indicated he looks destined to leave the Santiago Bernabéu this summer. It’s hard to imagine a single United fan who wouldn’t be enamoured with the idea of the 33-year-old Portuguese superstar returning, even though any operation to complete such a move would be costly.
Marco Verratti at PSG, Spurs defender Toby Alderweireld, Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, and even RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner; all have been regularly linked with potential moves to Man Utd recently. Whether any of them arrive is a different matter, but all the indications point to it being an explosive summer of transfer activity at Old Trafford.