Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Crucial Man Utd starter names two clubs he’d ditch Ten Hag for, with premature exit to prompt major signing

Man Utd stars Raphael Varane and Casemiro

Man Utd pair Raphael Varane and Casemiro

Raphael Varane revealed which two clubs – other than Man Utd – he’d gladly end his career at, with any premature exit likely to spark a major new signing.

The 29-year-old retired from international duty with France following the World Cup final in Qatar. The move will secretly have been warmly received at Old Trafford. Indeed, Varane has removed both travel and an average of 11 matches per year for France (over the last five years) from his annual calendar moving forward.

Varane has struggled with injuries since arriving from Real Madrid in 2021 and his absence from the international arena should increase his chances of staying fit for United.

When available, he and summer recruit Lisandro Martinez have formed a superb pairing at centre-back this season.

Indeed, the partnership has been so strong that £80m man Harry Maguire and Sweden captain Victor Lindelof have barely got a sniff.

The Manchester Evening News and MailPlus both reported Maguire has been put up for sale this summer.

Speculation Lindelof is on the chopping block too has been rampant. The Swede fanned the flames late last week when teasing a summer exit while on international duty.

As such, any exit for either Varane or Martinez would likely prompt United into sanctioning a blockbuster new arrival rather then falling back on Maguire or Lindelof.

According to Varane himself, a return to one of his two former clubs is possible.

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Varane eyeing up Lens, Real Madrid returns

Speaking to the French edition of GQ magazine, Varane revealed he’ll bring the curtain down on his club career at one of Lens, Real Madrid or Man Utd.

Varane admitted a return to the Bernabeu would be “complicated”, though moving back to Ligue 1 side Lens – assuming he’s willing to take a sizeable pay-cut – would be simpler.

Varane spent 10 years on Lens’ books between 2002-11 before earning a move to Real Madrid aged just 18.

“I will finish my career either in Madrid, or in Manchester, or in Lens,” said Varane. “I will not move to another club [other than those].

“But Madrid seems complicated to me. Players don’t usually go back there. The most likely outcome today is that I will finish [my club career] in either Manchester or Lens.”

Given Varane is one of the first names on Ten Hag’s team sheet at present, United will be praying the Frenchman is thinking about a return to Lens in the distant future, not near.

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