Manchester United have reportedly joined Newcastle in the battle to sign highly-rated Eintracht Frankfurt centre-back Evan Ndicka this summer.
The 22-year-old has emerged as one of the best central defenders in Germany this season, with Frankfurt reaching the Europa League final and finishing mid-table in the Bundesliga.
Newcastle were first credited with an interest in the player, but now Sport Bild says the Red Devils are now firmly in the race for Ndicka’s signature.
Incoming boss Erik ten Hag is known to want to strengthen his rearguard in the summer and Ndicka is an affordable option.
The Frenchman’s contract runs out in the summer of 2023 and he’s said to be available for around £17million.
Landing a quality performer for a low fee will allow Ten Hag funds to bolster other areas of his team.
Ndicka also offers versatility in his game, given that he can also operate at left-back. He is also comfortable in a back three or four.
The stopper helped Frankfurt keep eight clean sheets this term. He also offered a threat at the other end of the pitch, having bagged four goals.
Ndicka emerges as Maguire alternative
And with a growing feeling that United skipper Harry Maguire could be replaced this summer, Ndicka’s imposing frame and quality on the ball could see him come in as a bargain replacement.
However, Newcastle could have something to say about that – given their spending power.
The cash-rich Magpies are expected to spend heavily this summer, with a focus on Eddie Howe’s defence.
That will all be music to the ears of Frankfurt though. Indeed, several clubs showing an interest could see a bidding war develop for one of their top stars.
Ndicka looks set to face Rangers in Wednesday evening’s Europa League final in Seville.