Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Man Utd transfers: Fabrizio Romano labels Ten Hag target ‘the best’ and reveals seven-month chase amid reports deal is ‘done’

Kim Min-jae at the end of the Coppa Italia match between SSC Napoli and US Cremonese at Stadi

Manchester United are hopeful of soon reaching a positive conclusion to the chase for Kim Min-jae after Fabrizio Romano provided a detailed update on their interest in the Napoli star.

Erik ten Hag is about to launch phase two of his United rebuilding programme. The club have enjoyed excellent results in his first season in charge, yielding what looks like a top-four finish as well as Carabao Cup success. The Red Devils can still add the FA Cup to their trophy cabinet too if they can find a way to beat Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City.

With United needing to simply pick up one more point from their final two games to book a Champions League spot, plans are now underway for another busy summer of investment at Old Trafford.

Quite how much Ten Hag will have to spend remains to be seen. However, amid claims that a Sheikh Jassim-led takeover will prove successful, reports in Spain suggest a mammoth €500m spree is on the agenda – starting with two Barcelona stars.

And while that does seem a touch ambitious, it is more realistic to suggest Ten Hag has three big-name signings in mind.

To that end, the United boss seemingly wants a new defender, a midfielder and a striker to bolster his options.

Indeed, now it seems that positive steps are being taken towards landing the first of those in Kim.

The centre-half has enjoyed an excellent season at Napoli, winning Serie A for the first time since 1990.

But with a clause in his deal clearing the way for a summer exit, fears over his departure are growing.

READ MORESpectacular Man Utd transfer ‘agreed’ as star ‘signs €9m a year deal’ and ‘finds house in Alderley Edge’

Fabrizio Romano reveals seven-month Man Utd chase for Kim

Indeed, reports in Italy now claim an agreement is already in place to bring the South Korean to Old Trafford.

And while trusted reporter Romano has moved to quell claims the move is that advanced, he does detail United’s strong interest in the 26-year-old.

Speaking to Givemesport, he says United have been working on a deal for Kim for several months.

“For Kim, we have to say that Manchester United started to work on this deal at the end of October and the beginning of November.

“They have been sending their scouts and they have always been in attendance to follow Kim Min-jae with Napoli.

“He has been putting in excellent performances and he has been the best centre-back of the season, for sure, in Serie A. He is doing very, very well.”

Napoli boss Luciano Spalletti has gone one step further, labelling Kim as the best defender in the world today. Given Napoli’s march to the Serie A crown, it is hard to argue against that claim.

However, it does see more and more likely that his time in Naples will prove brief.

Having arrived from Fenerbahce last summer, Kim looks increasingly likely to sign for United. And Il Mattino reckons he has already agreed to sign a €9m a year deal – worth £150,000 a week – to move to Old Trafford.

Furthermore, they claim the 49-times capped star has ‘already found a villa’ in leafy Alderley Edge to reinforce those claims.

His signing will also allow United to wave farewell to unwanted club captain Harry Maguire. The England man has slipped down the pecking order under Ten Hag and appears likely to move on.

READ MORE: Ten Hag boost as Napoli find No 1 choice to replace Man Utd target Kim Min-jae