Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Transfer Gossip: Man Utd to spend £115m on two stars as Erik ten Hag sets his ‘priority’; Chelsea make decision on Kante future

New Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag

Erik ten Hag has told Manchester United chiefs to spend £115million and bring in two stars with world-class potential, while Chelsea have come to a decision on the future of French midfielder N’Golo Kante – both in Sunday’s Transfer Gossip.

AMBITIOUS TEN HAG WANTS DOUBLE SWOOP

Ten Hag has set his transfer ‘priority’ at Manchester United, as per the Daily Mirror, and the first player he wants to bring to Old Trafford is Ajax centre-half Jurrien Timber.

The 20-year-old was a rock at the back for Ajax during 2021-22, making 43 appearances across all competitions.

Due to this, Ten Hag knows Netherlands international Timber very well and believes he would be a great addition to the United squad.

Timber is on course to becoming one of the top central defenders in Europe and Ten Hag wants his development to continue in Manchester.

Harry Maguire, Raphael Varane and Victor Lindelof have all received criticism this season, so it’s easy to see why Ten Hag is prioritising the capture of a new centre-back.

Despite his tender age, Timber is a reliable and composed player. And he should bring a winning attitude to United as well.

The Ajax academy graduate has already won two Eredivisie titles and one KNVB Cup amid 74 appearances for the Dutch outfit.

Timber would cost the Red Devils £35million, according to the report. This represents a reasonable sum given the star’s high ceiling.

Previous reports have suggested an agreement is in place between Timber and United over personal terms, which makes him likely to reunite with Ten Hag this summer.

Jurrien Timber agrees terms and Man United lead Milinkovic-Savic race

Manchester United manager Erik Ten Hag will bring Jurrien Timber in from Ajax and aims to get Milinkovic-Savic deal sorted with Lazio

Timber is not the only young ace Ten Hag hopes to bring in. The Mirror claim he is also a big admirer of Benfica centre-forward Darwin Nunez.

The Uruguayan bagged 34 goals in the recently concluded season, making him one of the most sought after players in Europe.

Nunez is 22, which means he has plenty of time to get even better – a scary thought for defenders given his current scoring rate.

United have been pursuing Nunez for several months now and the arrival of Ten Hag hasn’t changed that. The Dutch coach wants Nunez to become Cristiano Ronaldo’s successor up front.

Benfica are demanding £80m for Nunez, which makes perfect sense after the stunning campaign he has had.

Should United wish to adhere to Ten Hag’s transfer demands, then they will need to spend a whopping £115m in the summer window.

CHELSEA’S KANTE ALSO IN MAN UTD SIGHTS

N'Golo Kante of Chelsea

United are also thought to be in the mix for Chelsea midfielder N’Golo Kante, who will soon enter the final 12 months of his Blues contract.

Kante has had a disappointing season due to groin and knee injuries, as well as catching coronavirus. Nevertheless, he remains one of the best midfielders in the world and would be a fantastic signing for Ten Hag.

The Guardian recently claimed United hold an interest in the Frenchman, and The Athletic now come in with an update.

They reveal Chelsea have come to a decision over Kante’s future – and it’s good news for those on the red side of Manchester.

Chelsea are reportedly willing to let 31-year-old Kante leave in the summer. And he will be available for a reduced price given his contract situation and the fact Thomas Tuchel wishes to revamp his midfield.

This essentially gives United the green light to make a bid for Kante, who won the World Cup with France in 2018.

Ten Hag must now decide, along with senior club officials, whether pursuing Kante is the right option for United.

But his massive impact on the pitch and extensive Premier League experience are likely to make him a top target.

The report doesn’t state exactly how much Chelsea will hold out for. transfermarkt value Kante at £45m, but he shouldn’t cost this much due to his age and contract running down.

United should meet whatever price Chelsea request. Such a move would see them weaken a Prem rival as well as bring a world-class star into their ranks.

LEEDS’ O’BRIEN CHASE HINGES ON CRUCIAL FACTOR

Huddersfield Town midfielder Lewis O'Brien

The Sun claim Leeds are preparing to go back in for Huddersfield man Lewis O’Brien.

The central midfielder was a target for Leeds last season, although they failed to complete the move before August’s transfer deadline.

The Whites continue to monitor O’Brien’s situation and Jesse Marsch is hoping director of football Victor Orta will submit a £10m bid.

This fee is well within Leeds’ budget, given the fact they just paid Red Bull Salzburg £25m for USA star Brenden Aaronson.

Such an offer could tempt Huddersfield into selling. However, the potential move is reliant upon one crucial factor.

Huddersfield play Nottingham Forest in the Championship play-off final on Sunday afternoon. If the Terriers win, then they will have the finances to reject Leeds’ bid and hand O’Brien an attractive new deal.

Such a contract would also warn off other top-flight suitors if the Englishman goes on to shine in the Prem.

But if O’Brien’s team lose and Forest go up instead, then Huddersfield may opt to sell and use the money to improve other areas of the squad.

Leeds will be watching the Wembley clash closely to discover their chances of landing O’Brien once the transfer window opens.