Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Man Utd stun Newcastle with move to hijack ‘advanced’ deal, as ruthless Ratcliffe puts two stars up for sale

Fulham centre-back Tosin Adarabioyo

Man Utd could hijack an advanced Newcastle deal

Manchester United are emerging as a serious threat to Newcastle over a clever centre-back coup, and a report has revealed both Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof are up for sale, though only one will leave.

The Red Devils have been powerless to prevent opposing sides from shooting at will for large parts of the current campaign. Injuries have decimated Man Utd’s backline and especially at centre-half, though some believe the fault lays with the tactics deployed by manager Erik ten Hag.

Others point to the midfield’s inability to adequately shield their defence. The lack of hard-working forwards is another factor that doesn’t help stifle the opposition.

In any case, the centre-back position is where most of the focus lays and it’s an area in Man Utd’s squad that is about to experience major change.

Raphael Varane is primed to leave the club as a free agent at season’s end. Cutting the Frenchman loose will net Man Utd a saving of roughly £340,000-a-week in salary commitments.

Elsewhere, 36-year-old Jonny Evans will also see his contract expire this summer. Per ESPN, a final decision on whether to offer Evans a new deal is yet to be made. However, other outlets have suggested the Northern Irishman won’t be offered an extension.

Two exits are thus on the cards and according to ESPN, one of Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof could be part of the exodus too.

They state Man Utd are ‘open to offers’ for both stars. However, it’s anticipated only one of the two will leave.

Selling both as well as waving goodbye to Varane and Evans would leave the club with just Lisandro Martinez and the inexperienced Willy Kambwala.

As such, only one of Maguire and Lindelof is expected to depart. Which of the two goes hinges entirely on what offers Man Utd receive and in turn, whether said player agrees personal terms.

Indeed, Man Utd accepted a £30m bid for Maguire from West Ham last summer. However, Maguire is understood to have rejected the move and did not engage in discussions with the Hammers over personal terms.

READ MORE: Man Utd ‘revolution’ to start with £60m La Liga raid as Ratcliffe loses patience with Ten Hag signing

Man Utd threaten Newcastle deal

Everton’s Jarrad Branthwaite is a key target for Man Utd at the heart of defence. The Toffees are expected to cash in on one or both of Branthwaite and Amadou Onana to help balance the books – even though they’ve successfully avoided relegation.

But with multiple centre-backs leaving, more than one new signing is required. Per ESPN, Man Utd hope to win the race for Fulham’s impending free agent, Tosin Adarabioyo.

Tosin, 26, will leave Craven Cottage as a free agent this summer. Transfer guru Fabrizio Romano has previously confirmed that decision has already been taken by the player, much to Fulham’s dismay.

A host of Premier League sides including Tottenham and Chelsea have shown interest in the 6ft 5in defender. TEAMtalk learned on May 1 that Newcastle were in advanced talks with the player.

The Daily Mail subsequently highlighted two reasons why Tosin looks favourably upon a move to St. James’ Park. But per ESPN, Man Utd could shatter Eddie Howe’s dream.

New technical director Jason Wilcox knows Tosin well through their time together at Manchester City. Wilcox previously worked in Man City’s youth set-up at a time when Tosin was rising through the club’s junior ranks.

Whether the Wilcox connection will be enough to steer a deal to Old Trafford and away from St. James’ Park remains to be seen.

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