Manchester United have reportedly offered a huge net salary to Barcelona centre-back Ronald Araujo, though the Spanish press suggest Xavi’s side won’t go down without a fight.
The Uruguayan, 22, has quickly developed into a critical cog in the Barcelona machine. Ronald Araujo broke into the first-team in 2019 and has since become a mainstay in Xavi’s starting elevens this season. Indeed, Araujo has featured in every league match at the Camp Nou this campaign in which he has been passed fit.
However, the centre-half’s contract is due to expire in the summer of 2023, presenting Barcelona with an obvious problem.
They want to tie both Araujo and Spanish wonderkid Gavi down to fresh terms. But according to Football Espana, talks on both fronts have not gone well thus far.
Both stars have reportedly rejected their first offers. Their dissatisfaction stems from the level of salary they are being presented with.
Now, Sport Witness (citing Spanish outlet Sport), state Man Utd are ready to pounce for Araujo.
Man Utd make huge Ronald Araujo ‘offer’
In fact, it’s reported the Red Devils have already let it be known a salary offer of ‘€10m net per year’ would find its way into Araujo’s pocket if he signed. That roughly equates to a net wage of £162,000-a-week.
That would constitute an enormous bump on what Araujo is currently earning. What’s more, it would be beyond what Barcelona can currently offer.
Araujo has regularly been touted as a candidate to revamp United’s ailing defence in the summer. He has also drawn links with Liverpool, though Ibrahima Konate’s arrival may have tempered their interest.
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The path to an Araujo deal thus appears relatively clear for United. However, the Sport report indicates Barca boss Xavi is ‘optimistic’ Araujo will commit his future at the Camp Nou.
Renewed talks over a new deal are reportedly underway at present. Football Espana declared both Araujo and Gavi have ‘given their word’ they will extend their stays.
Sport add a new deal for Araujo specifically is at an ‘advanced’ stage, though Barcelona are fully aware of Man Utd’s threat. And despite the players giving their word, a low-ball offer won’t be enough to forge an extension.
Whether United’s financial muscle will be enough to tempt Araujo away, only time will tell.
Completed deal throws up second defender option
Meanwhile, Manchester United have been tipped to sign Borussia Dortmund defender Manuel Akanji, who has said he has a “big dream” to play at Old Trafford.
Akanji, 26, is out of contract in 2023 and the centre-back is understood to have rejected a new deal from Dortmund. The Bundesliga giant announced the free-transfer signing of Bayern Munich’s Niklas Sule earlier in the week.
Whether Akanji is concerned his playing time maybe reduced with the arrival of Sule is unclear. But the 38-cap Switzerland international has rejected a new offer from BVB, according to Sport1 reporter Patrick Berger.
Berger says Akanji, who has recently recovered from knee surgery, has turned down €9.5m a year in order to potentially pursue a move to United. He is believed to be looking for around €12m a season to bring himself in line with the club’s top earners.
Akanji though has historically stated that he dreamed of a move to Old Trafford after signing for Dortmund in 2018.
“I have a big dream,” Akanji told NZZ. “To get as far as possible in football. Since my childhood days Manchester United have been my favourite club. I’d like to play there one day.”