Manchester United are ready to wave farewell to Brazil midfielder Fred this summer with a trusted source revealing that talks over a surprise move to Fulham have begun.
The 30-year-old moved to Old Trafford back in summer 2018, signing in a £47m move from Shakhtar Donetsk. Having looked destined to sign for Manchester City at the time, it was a late intervention from Jose Mourinho that persuaded Fred to move to Old Trafford instead.
Signing an initial deal for four years, with the option of a further 12 months, United moved to extend Fred’s stay until summer 2024 back in December.
In that time, Fred has been a regular in the side, making 212 appearances in all competitions.
And while the star has just enjoyed perhaps his best season yet in a United shirt, it seems his time at the club is due to come a close.
Indeed, with just a year left on his deal, we exclusively revealed earlier this month that the club were open to offers for the Brazilian.
Now it seems that prospective exit is heating up – with the Manchester Evening News reporting that intermediaries are holding talks over a prospective move to Fulham.
The Cottagers enjoyed a brilliant season back in the Premier League, finishing an impressive 10th. And the catalyst for top-half finish was one of their summer 2022 signings, Joao Palhinha, who enjoyed an excellent campaign.
Fulham, though, look like they’re facing a tough battle to hang on to the Portugal star. And a number of big-name suitors are reportedly considering raiding Fulham amid a £50m valuation.
Man Utd willing to let Fred depart
Now it seems the Cottagers are looking to Fred as a potential replacement. And he could link up with former United man Andreas Pereira if he makes the move to Craven Cottage.
Per the MEN, United boss Erik Ten Hag would prefer to sell Fred over another midfield star in Scott McTominay. The latter has been linked with a move to Newcastle, amid a dwindling amount of game-time this season.
However, the article claims Ten Hag sees more sense in the sale of Fred, who at 30 is four years the senior of the two players.
The Brazilian midfielder was seen deep in conversation with Marco Silva at the end of Sunday’s game at Old Trafford.
Now the prospects of a move to the Cottage are seemingly gathering pace.
Fred, despite putting in some of his best performances this season in a United short, has only started 22 games – the lowest tally since his maiden season at the club in 2018/19.
However, his best displays have come in the wins over Manchester City and Barcelona, while he was also a starter in the Carabao Cup final win over Newcastle.
And while he has started just two games since the 7-0 embarrassment at Anfield, Ten Hag is considering his recall in a tactical tweak for the FA Cup final.
Fred one of six stars Ten Hag will sacrifice this summer
However, reports claim that will prove his final game in a United shirt with the player being sacrificed to help raise transfer funds.
Indeed, he could prove the first of several departures this summer with Anthony Martial, Harry Maguire, Eric Bailly, Brandon Williams and Alex Telles among those likely to move on.
Fred has scored 12 times for United, and was part of the Brazil squad at the 2022 World Cup.
Ten Hag wants to bring in another midfielder this summer, with Juventus star Adrien Rabiot one potential option.