Manchester United are ready to launch a double £186m raid on the Bundesliga amid claims they want to add Liverpool target Kai Havertz to their planned £116.2m deal for Jadon Sancho.
Reports on Monday morning raised the possibility that a deal to take Sancho from Borussia Dortmund to Old Trafford was on, with personal terms and a significant buy-out clause in his contract said to have been agreed.
It is also widely reported that United also want to sign Jack Grealish from Aston Villa this summer, with manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looking to pair up January recruit Bruno Fernandes in an exciting new-look midfield.
However, according to The Sun, Solskjaer is equally as keen on Bayer Leverkusen’s precocious young talent Havertz and could yet turn to ther 20-year-old if the club are given any encouragement.
At just 20 years of age and rated in the £70m bracket, Havertz has become one of Europe’s hottest properties on the back of two stellar seasons in the Bundesliga.
Last season’s 20-goal campaign across all competitions was followed up with another double-figure campaign this season as the versatile forward set pulses racing at the BayArena.
However, The Sun believe a move to Old Trafford beckons with the star said to be in ‘constant communication’ with Leverkusen over his future.
And while Bayern Munich have also been touted as a potential destination, Havertz has suggested he is open to a move abroad with some rather telling coments.
“I’m ready to take a big step, and I like challenges. For me, this also includes abroad,” he was quoted as saying in Bild last week.
“Leverkusen are a great club, I feel good. I have always said that. But of course I want to take the next step in my career at some point. That’s my ambition.”
Havertz’s comments come as no surprise to Leverkusen sporting director Simon Rolfes, who admitted it is only logical he leaves the BayArena at some point in the future.
“It’s a logical development that Kai will leave Leverkusen at some point, Rolfes said.
“I’m not surprised that he’s attracted to other countries.
“We know he feels very comfortable here. We are in constant communication with Kai – it’s all very open and transparent.”
Havertz transfer advice from Rummenigge
Regardless of where he ends up, Michael Rummenigge, the brother of Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz, has warned the 20-year-old about the pitfalls of leaving Leverkusen so early in his career.
He said: “I have seen Kai Havertz very often in the Under-17s and U19s, because we had some of his team-mates under contract with our consultancy agency.
“You didn’t have to be a rocket scientist to instantly recognise this boy’s special talent.
“He was incredibly supported by Bayer Leverkusen and has long since paid back their trust in him.
“Given the current situation, I would advise Havertz to stay with Bayer for another year or two.
“There he can develop best, take the next step towards becoming an absolute leader.
“In my opinion, a move to Bayern Munich would be the next best step in a year or two – a top European club, which is still a bit more familiar and relaxed than one of the other options abroad.”
Rummenigge also fears Bayer would be unable to maximise their asking price for Havertz were they to allow him to move on this summer due to the current economic crisis in the game.
He added: “In the coming transfer period Bayer would not be able to achieve the transfer that one actually imagines, and which corresponds to Havertz’s market value outside of corona times.
“[Bayer manager] Peter Bosz recently spoke of €60 to €80 million (£50m to £70m) – I don’t believe in that myself.”
Whether Havertz is targeted or not, United have been warned that prising Grealish from Villa this summer will prove extremely difficult.