Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

‘Ridiculous’ Man Utd offer sees agreed transfer crumble, as Ratcliffe blamed for amateurish move

British billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe

Manchester United will hold a meeting on Monday to determine whether to revive a major transfer that reports claim has collapsed, while Sir Jim Ratcliffe has been blamed for failing to get the deal over the line.

Numerous Man Utd transfers are gathering pace, with the club’s summer window rapidly heating up. Regarding exits, Donny van de Beek is primed to join Girona after Man Utd agreed a heavily incentivised deal with the LaLiga side.

Casemiro remains in talks with Saudi Arabian delegations over a move to the SPL. Harry Maguire has been transfer-listed, while sales are being sought for the likes of Jadon Sancho and Mason Greenwood too.

On the arrivals front, Man Utd have agreed personal terms with both Matthijs De Ligt and Joshua Zirkzee.

Bayern Munich will command upwards of €50m for De Ligt, while Zirkzee’s release clause at Bologna is set at €40m.

Man Utd are set to hold talks with Bologna regarding the structure of Zirkzee’s move. United are still deciding whether to simply activate the clause or pay the €40m fee in a structured deal.

Elsewhere, Man Utd also have an agreement on personal terms with Everton centre-back Jarrad Branthwaite in place. Branthwaite will earn around £150,000-a-week if completing a move to Old Trafford.

David Ornstein has confirmed United’s moves for De Ligt and Branthwaite – both centre-halves – are not linked. In other words, both players could arrive and it’s not a case of signing one or the other.

However, Man Utd’s opening bid of £43m (£8m of which comprised add-ons) fell well below Everton’s £70m valuation.

With the unofficial June 30 PSR deadline long gone, Everton are doubly determined to retain Branthwaite and only cash in if their top end valuation is met.

That’s prompted claims Man Utd’s move for Branthwaite has crumbled given they have already made it crystal clear they won’t overpay for the 21-year-old.

And according to former Everton CEO, Keith Wyness, the man to blame for Man Utd’s transfer miss is new co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe.

Ratcliffe blamed for transfer misstep

“Now we’re past the 30 June deadline, we’re in a position of strength,” Wyness told Football insider.

“From what I’m told, we can refuse ridiculous offers, like the one we received for Jarrad Branthwaite from Man Utd.

“The whole football community can agree on that, and it hasn’t done United or Ratcliffe any favours. He’ll learn as he goes on – you can’t do that kind of thing.

“I’m hoping the Branthwaite situation will be resolved with him staying past this summer deadline.”

READ MORE: Man Utd centre-back targets: Every option linked for a summer switch assessed

Ratcliffe criticism harsh; Man Utd weighing up improved bid

Wyness obviously has Everton loyalties given his previous affiliation with the club. Nonetheless, it does appear likely that Man Utd will miss out on signing Branthwaite this summer.

Whether that is Ratcliffe’s fault is open to debate. Man Utd have been heavily criticised in the past for overpaying in the market and if the club are to compete with the likes of Man City, Arsenal and Liverpool again, they must operate far more cannily in the windows.

What’s more, it’s well documented Man Utd’s transfer budget prior to player sales is modest, with reports stating Erik ten Hag only has £50m to spend.

Given additions are wanted at centre-back (De Ligt, Branthwaite), central midfield (Manuel Ugarte) and striker (Zirkzee), it’s perhaps for the best that United are playing hardball with Everton.

In any case, a separate report from the Daily Mail revealed Man Utd will hold a transfer meeting among senior officials on Monday.

The purpose of the get-together is to push ahead with certain transfers (De Ligt, Zirkzee), and determine whether other moves should be accelerated or aborted.

Branthwaite’s move will reportedly be discussed and Man Utd will decide whether to launch an improved second offer.

But given their first bid came a whopping £27m shy of Everton’s valuation, it would take a gigantic leap to keep the deal alive.

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