Manchester United News

A million-dollar chip, United prepares an incredible offer in the summer

Man Utd will be looking to sign another striker this summer and Rasmus Hojlund is a big factor.

By Angus Barnes

Man Utd will be looking to sign another striker this summer and Rasmus Hojlund is a big factor.
Man Utd will be looking to sign another striker this summer and Rasmus Hojlund is a big factor.
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Ivan Toney looks increasingly set to leave Brentford this summer, but a move to Manchester United looks rather unlikely. Erik ten Hag is certainly an admirer of the 27-year-old, though they are not in a position to spend a club-record fee on a player who would be direct competition for Rasmus Hojlund in attack. Brentford are believed to want roughly £100million for their talisman this summer, which would mean a record fee for United if he were to end up at Old Trafford, eclipsing the £89m spent on Paul Pogba eight years ago.

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"You always have to be aware of translation. Google Translate is not always the best," Thomas Frank joked in his Thursday press conference while he clarified his stance on selling Toney. "It's the same message I said the whole time. I would love him to stay forever, but the reality is he has one year left on his contract in the summer. "I think he's been pretty open about maybe playing for a top club in the future, so I think there are a couple of scenarios; he leaves in the summer, leaves in the winter or he stays. If he leaves whenever it will be fantastic to see him playing for a top club."

Of those 'top clubs', a move to United is mooted because their needs for a striker are well known. Ten Hag wanted to sign another in the January transfer window, and it will be a priority this summer, with Anthony Martial set to leave the club for free. Toney has scored twice in three appearances since he returned from his eight-month ban and is looking to make up for lost time. He would love to represent England at the European Championship this summer, but possible involvement in the tournament could scupper any early summer move.

That is another issue to contend with. Ten Hag likes to get signings in as early as possible so that they can adapt to their new surroundings, and it will certainly be the preference this summer as well, though there is an acceptance that negotiations will be harder with an international tournament ongoing. Ultimately, though, it seems less likely United will look to spend another huge fee on a forward just a year after they signed Hojlund in a deal worth £72 million.

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The solution to the problems

Toney is certainly a ready-made solution to those problems in attack, but United can't afford to be drawn into a bidding war for him when there are also other areas of the squad that are in need of desperate attention. It also raises the question of what calibre of forward they actually need. A matter of months ago, it was fair to argue for a superstar addition, but right now, a supplemantary one looks more sensible.

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