Manchester United are showing an interest in Monaco midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni, according to several reports.
United are facing the reality of the situation with Paul Pogba, who is in the final year of his contract. They do not want to lose him for free for a second time, but it seems likely he would only renew after the transfer window closes. Thus, they are in a risky position and may need to plan for a future without him.
In that case, they have already been linked with a wide range of midfielders. Even if Pogba stays, they could look to add a more defensive option for the base of their midfield.
One name who seems to be under consideration is Tchouameni, according to reports. The Monaco man has been confirmed as an option for United by Duncan Castles on the Transfer Window Podcast and certain other journalists, including Belgian expert Sacha Tavolieri.
Castles said: “Manchester United, [Tchouameni] very much falls within their scouting remit.
“The targeting of that kind of younger cadre of players who can develop into top stars has been more of a focus in recent years.
“He is an obvious fit for Manchester United if the change in midfield happens that we’ve been talking about for so long, which is that Paul Pogba doesn’t sign a new contract at Man Utd or is sold this summer.
“Again, most likely avenue for that to happen is Paris Saint-Germain at present.
“Then you bring in Tchouameni who would certainly be much lower maintenance than Pogba, should be more consistent in his performance.
“If they have that space in their squad created by Pogba, then Tchouameni is one of the options to replace.
“He would be cheaper than options like Declan Rice, who has been mentioned as an option for them. I’m told Monaco value him at around €40m.”
Tavolieri, meanwhile, claims United are already in talks with Tchouameni’s agents. They may even make a bid before this transfer window closes.
Tchouameni is just 21 years old, but played in 36 Ligue 1 games for Monaco last season. It was his first full year there after joining them midway through the previous campaign, from Bordeaux.
The France under-21 international has a contract with Monaco until 2024 and has previously been linked with Chelsea. Juventus were also keen, but they have signed Manuel Locatelli from Sassuolo in a similar position.
Man Utd have other options
Although Tchouameni seems to be on their radar, Man Utd are looking at a wide range of midfielders.
A recent report named two potential targets currently playing for the same club, who both could be available for decent fees.
They would each be more experienced that Tchouameni, so United would have to decide which route they are going down…