Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Man Utd to agree ‘crucial’ deal with classy teenager as Fabrizio Romano dismisses Real Madrid transfer claim

Sir Jim Ratcliffe has big plans for Kobbie Mainoo at Manchester United

Sir Jim Ratcliffe has big plans for Kobbie Mainoo at Manchester United

Sir Jim Ratcliffe will make agreeing a new deal with Kobbie Mainoo one of his top priorities at Manchester United this summer, while Fabrizio Romano has firmly dismissed the prospects of an agreement with Real Madrid.

The teenager has been one of the few bright sparks in a hugely-underwhelming season for the Red Devils which has seen Erik ten Hag’s side fall badly off the pace in the Premier League and a huge 13 points adrift of the Champions League places with just six games left to play.

While Tottenham could yet beat Villa to that fourth and final UCL spot, Unai Emery’s side know that five points from their remaining matches will at least ensure Ten Hag’s side cannot catch them in the hunt for a place at UEFA’s top table.

And while Manchester United can reach a second successive FA Cup final of Ten Hag’s reign, it may not be enough for Ten Hag to keep his job as new minority shareholder Ratcliffe ponders whether to wield the axe at the end of the season.

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To that end, we exclusively first revealed the news last month that many senior players at Old Trafford expect the axe to fall on the Dutchman at the end of the season, by which time his contract will have just a year to run.

Those claims have ramped up over the last week or so in the wake of some truly alarming performances that have now seen the Red Devils go four matches without a win and leave them facing up to one of their lowest finishes ever in Premier League history.

Man Utd open talks over new deal for Kobbie Mainoo

Indeed, with one pundit over the weekend claiming he has heard “major conversations” are taking place with a would-be successor to Ten Hag at Man Utd, it seems a matter of when not if the axe will fall.

Aside from potentially winning the FA Cup – and remember that success in the competition was once deemed not enough to spare Louis van Gaal – perhaps the one piece of credit Ten Hag can take is from the blooding this season of Mainoo.

Ever since coming into the side for the win at Everton in November, the teenage star has not put a foot wrong, consistently turning over impressive performance after impressive performance with form that has seen him catapulted into the England reckoning.

Indeed, so important has Mainoo become, that he is now one of the first names on the United teamsheet and also looks a strong option to make the Three Lions squad for this summer’s European Championships over in Germany.

However, while his deal at United is not due to expire until 2027, the Red Devils are keen to reward him with a new one, especially as his previous arrangement was struck before he became a first-team regular.

And amid reports that Real Madrid are looking to lure him away – Los Blancos are preparing to bid farewell to veteran stars Luka Modric and Toni Kroos and Mainoo has been billed as the perfect addition to their side  – trusted transfer guru Romano has provided an update on the 18-year-old’s situation.

Speaking to Here We Go podcast, Romano said: “It’s crucial for INEOS to have Kobbie Mainoo as one of the faces of the new project. He is younger, he is a Manchester United product.

“He is really happy at Manchester United because he has the chance to play every single game. We see so many negatives with Erik ten Hag but he clearly trusted Kobbie Mainoo in a difficult situation.”

 

Real Madrid transfer claims dismissed

Romano added: “What we can say is that conversations [over a new deal] have been going on since February. I can confirm that United want to extend his contract. It’s not an urgent situation as the contract is still long and United are not in a rush, but they want to make it happen.

“They want to offer him a new deal and have already held preliminary discussions with his agents. The conversation is quite positive.”

Asked about the Real Madrid speculation, Romano insists Mainoo’s only thoughts are on staying at Old Trafford right now, especially given the way his game has been allowed to develop in the United side.

“Mainoo wants to stay and United want to give him an important salary to make sure the player is super happy at the club.”

Mainoo’s current deal is worth an estimated £10,000 a week and runs until June 2027, though United do have an addition year.

It’s reported the new arrangement will be worth five times that – £50k a week and the same as what fellow starlet Alejandro Garnacho earns – and will likely run until summer 2028 at least, with the United having the safety net of another year on top.

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