Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Adrien Rabiot a step closer to Man Utd after Juventus thrash out terms with successor; separate loan deal agreed

Juventus midfielder Adrien Rabiot

Man Utd have received a boost in their Adrien Rabiot pursuit with a Juventus sale now teeing up their own arrival, while the Red Devils have agreed a separate loan exit, per reports.

Rabiot, 27, looks on course to join Manchester United in the coming days. The Frenchman emerged as something of a surprise candidate to bolster Erik ten Hag’s midfield. However, fan concerns regarding Rabiot being a target out of the blue were laid to rest by Fabrizio Romano.

Indeed, the transfer guru insisted Rabiot had been on United’s radar dating back to July. The reason his name only surfaced in the media in recent days was due to United ramping up their interest at that time.

Regardless, United have forged an initial agreement worth £15m with Juventus. Add-ons could ultimately take the deal towards the £18m mark.

That could represent excellent value for a player who has 29 France caps to his name. However, work must still be done on the player’s end and that may not be straightforward.

Indeed, reports from Italy are suggesting Rabiot wants an increase on his £6m-a-year salary.

There had even been talk of Juventus demanding Anthony Martial as part of the move. Given how the rejuvenated Frenchman performed in pre-season, that would’ve likely been a deal breaker for United.

Thankfully for those wishing to see Rabiot in Manchester, however, it is now in Juve’s best interests to see a deal cross the line.

Juventus move for Paredes

That’s because Romano reported the Turin powerhouse have forged an agreement over personal terms with Rabiot’s successor, Leandro Paredes.

The Argentine plies his trade for PSG and Romano tweeted a ‘full agreement’ on personal terms has been reached.

The move now hinges on Juventus and PSG thrashing out the structure of the deal including the fee.

Yet given Paredes plays in the same position as Rabiot, the onus is on Juventus to get Rabiot out of the door sooner rather than later.

Ethan Laird loan agreed

Elsewhere, the Telegraph’s Mike McGrath reported a loan exit has been agreed for United right-back, Ethan Laird.

The promising 21-year-old had looked on course to join Watford, though the arrival of Villarreal’s Mario Gaspar torpedoed that move.

Instead, McGrath tweeted United have ‘agreed a season-long loan’ that will see Laird join QPR.

Rabiot an upgrade, though not without drawbacks

The much maligned Scott McTominay-Fred axis once again anchored United’s midfield on opening day.

The pair both struggled with Fred replaced after 53 minutes and McTominay lucky not to see red for an above-the-ankle-tackle.

United simply must upgrade such a crucial area of the pitch if they are to ever haul the likes of Liverpool and Man City back in. Frenkie de Jong’s arrival would be a huge boost, though Rabiot will help too.

However, speaking on Sky Sports earlier this week, European football expert, Kevin Hatchard, detailed why Rabiot’s arrival will inevitably come with a backdrop of drama.

He said: “There is drama attached to him – there’s no doubt about that. He was on the standby list for the 2018 World Cup and refused to be on it for France.

“Rabiot sulked his way out of Paris and left in really acrimonious circumstances. You then have his mother Veronique who provides her own drama.

“When the French went out of the European Championships, she was with the other parents of players and started laying into Paul Pogba’s parents, Kylian Mbappe’s parents, saying ‘they should be playing better, you should have a word with them’.

“She brings here own drama, as well as Adrien.”