Exclusive: Man Utd identify four Ivan Toney alternatives as Ten Hag ramps up new striker search

Man Utd striker targets Medhi Taremi (Porto), Wissam Ben Yedder (Monaco), Gabriel Barbosa (Flamengo) and Marcos Leanardo (Santos)

Man Utd striker targets Medhi Taremi (Porto), Wissam Ben Yedder (Monaco), Gabriel Barbosa (Flamengo) and Marcos Leanardo (Santos)

TEAMtalk understands that Manchester United are likely to pull out of the race for Ivan Toney, in a boost for Arsenal and Chelsea.

The Red Devils have been tipped to join the chase for the Brentford striker at a time when goals have been hard to come by for the club’s current forwards.

Marcus Rashford, who netted 30 times last season, has scored just one goal so far this term. Rasmus Hojlund has scored three times, while Alejandro Garnacho and Anthony Martial have also scored just once. Antony is yet to make a single-goal contribution, too.

The lack of goals has led to speculation that Man Utd are going to dip into the market for a new front man in January and TEAMtalk sources indicate that while that is true, there should be a limit on expectations for now.

Erik ten Hag’s transfer hopes have changed radically throughout his time at Old Trafford. When he arrived, Man Utd were being linked with the likes of Frenkie De Jong and Harry Kane but such dreams were never realised.

Now, with no full takeover, the Red Devils must tread carefully around Financial Fair Play regulations.

Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s proposal to buy a 25% stake in the club may give them some spending power, but they have to be wary of transfer costs going into the winter market.

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Man Utd identify four Ivan Toney alternatives

It may prove difficult for Man Utd to compete with Chelsea and Arsenal for Toney. Brentford will only consider offers in the region of £80m this winter. If Ten Hag’s team are to sharpen their attacking tools in January then recruitment staff must open up to new ideas.

31-year-old Porto centre-forward Mehdi Taremi is a long-term target for Man Utd and his profile could fit the club perfectly if they can convince him to move.

Taremi also has interest from the Saudi Pro League and was considered by Al Hilal in the last transfer window, with his contract set to expire in June.

Monaco’s Wissam Ben-Yedder, 33, is another figure Man Utd have identified as a potential experienced option to add to their front line, TEAMtalk understands.

Gabriel Barbosa, 27, plays for Flamengo in Brazil and is contemplating where he goes next as he has always had an eye on returning to Europe. The former Inter Milan man also has interest from Saudi, but Man Utd could throw their hat into the ring this winter.

Another player in Brazil that Man Utd scouts have been keeping tabs on is 20-year-old Santos striker Marcos Leonardo, who is a target for Newcastle.

Leanardo is likely to make a switch to Europe soon and his price valuation could be achievable at £20m. TEAMtalk understands that Man Utd would prefer to bring in someone with more experience, however.

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