Man Utd to launch improved Branthwaite bid, but Everton give priority to £50m Arsenal transfer instead

Everton centre-back Jarrad Branthwaite, Arsenal transfer target Amadou Onana

Manchester United will make a second bid for Everton centre-back Jarrad Branthwaite, though there’s growing fears Arsenal will torpedo the move with a £50m transfer agreement of their own, according to multiple reports.

Branthwaite is Man Utd’s No 1 target at centre-half and the Red Devils require at least one new addition due to Raphael Varane’s free agent exit.

Furthermore, United are open to offers for Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof. Jose Mourinho’s Fenerbahce have been heavily linked with tabling a tempting offer for Lindelof who is ‘bored’ of Erik ten Hag.

Man Utd have already struck an agreement on personal terms with Branthwaite. Reports claim the 21-year-old centre-half will earn in the region of £150,000-£160,000-a-week if completing a move to Old Trafford.

However, the biggest barrier to the deal is Everton and Man Utd’s sizeable valuation gap.

Everton believe Branthwaite is worth £70m and have pointed to the transfers that brought Josko Gvardiol (£77.6m) and Wesley Fofana (£75m) to Manchester City and Chelsea respectively.

By contrast, TEAMtalk has been told Man Utd have zero intention of overpaying, as was evidenced by their opening offer.

United’s first bid totalled just £43m (£35m plus £8m in add-ons). Unsurprisingly, it was met with a swift rejection by Everton.

Man Utd do have alternative targets in mind should they walk away from signing Branthwaite. Leny Yoro (Lille), Matthijs De Ligt (Bayern Munich) and Marc Guehi (Crystal Palace) are just three alternatives they’re casting their eye over.

READ MORE: Man Utd centre-back targets: Every option linked for a summer switch assessed

Nonetheless, Branthwaite remains Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s preferred signing at centre-half and according to HITC, a new and improved bid will be tabled.

Arsenal transfer could scupper new Branthwaite bid

The report did not disclose how much the new bid will be worth, though it may be destined to fail anyway.

Firstly, HITC stated that despite agreeing personal terms with Man Utd, Branthwaite will not push for a move.

The inference there is that should the deal fail to progress, he won’t take matters into his own hands in an attempt to engineer a move.

Secondly, it’s reaffirmed Everton would much rather sell midfielder Amadou Onana instead of Branthwaite. Doing so would help Everton balance their books before the all-important June 30 date and allow the club to retain Branthwaite.

That’s where Arsenal enter the equation, with the Gunners making contact with the Toffees regarding an Onana transfer over the weekend.

Partey out, Onana in?

Arsenal are seeking a younger and hungrier upgrade on Thomas Partey who is expected to finalise a transfer to Saudi Arabia.

Onana is a player Arsenal have monitored for a full year and Everton will greenlight a sale if bids of around £50m are received.

Even if an Arsenal transfer does not materialise, Everton do not lack for interest in their Belgian midfielder.

TEAMtalk exclusively learned on Saturday that Aston Villa too have contacted Everton over Onana who is viewed as an alternative target to Conor Gallagher.

As mentioned, selling Onana and retaining Branthwaite is the preferred outcome for Sean Dyche and Everton.

In the event Man Utd’s upcoming second bid for Branthwaite fails to yield a breakthrough, TEAMtalk has learned a tantalising swap deal for England international Guehi will be explored.

Furthermore, Sky Germany state United are internally giving serious consideration to launching a move for De Ligt. The Dutchman has been put up for sale by Bayern Munich to the tune of €50m/£43m.

DON’T MISS: Ten Hag issues veiled warning over new Man Utd deal as Dutchman breaks silence on Thomas Tuchel talks