Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Manchester United are “working hard” to bring in new faces this summer – and with Alex Telles linked, transfer expert Fabrizio Romano reckons two deals are close.
After a promising first full campaign as Old Trafford manager, Solskjaer will have hoped for a pain-free summer on the transfer front.
However, with just over two weeks left, United so far just have Donny van de Beek to show for their efforts.
Solskjaer knows better than most what it takes to win trophies at United and he seems to be willing to stay patient to get the right players in.
However, their transfer targets are proving tricky to get done – with a deal for Jadon Sancho dragging on all summer.
Borussia Dortmund’s €120million (£108m) asking price is a key issue. When asked about the prospective deal, Solskjaer refused to speak about the England international.
“You know I can’t say anything about other clubs’ players out of respect to them,” was his stock response.
However, transfer guru Romano offers United some hope.
He believes a double deal is drawing closer for the club and expects both to get done before the October 5 deadline.
One of these is believed to be for Alex Telles. That’s despite reports that PSG have also emerged as strong suitors for the deparing Porto man.
The Sun claims Telles has agreed a five-year deal at United and only a fee needs to be agreed.
When asked by a fan on United’s progress on the transfer front, Romano replied: “It will come. A LB and winger will arrive…step by step.”
The United boss though refuses to speculate, though did have an understanding about growing fan frustration.
“Of course I want players in the building that we want to work with and who want to be a part of it, and who want to be here,” Solskjaer said.
“You need the quality on the pitch. You also need the personal qualities but you also really want to be here. They need to show you that they want to be here.
“That’s really important for us as a group, that we move forward.
“It’s not as big a pool (as potential options) as for other clubs. Being good enough for Man United is one thing, then you’ve got another club who probably want to keep that type of player too.
“My focus is us, of course. You see other clubs, what they do. They put a challenge up for us. Our response has to be results. That’s the response.
“We can be best at the things that don’t cost anything. The culture here, the training, the coaching, getting fitter.
“But, yeah, we’re looking at a small pool of players that can add to the quality of our team. Let’s see what we can do. The club are working hard and I understand that they are working hard.”
Asked if the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic has had an impact, Solskjaer said: “I think you can’t ignore the impact of the coronavirus.
“I think that’s really changed the market. It happened more or less in that period where maybe negotiations would happen.
“Of course the financial uncertainty of that has added on the difficulty of predicting where we’re at.
“You want always to have as long as possible with players.
“I think last season, though, shows that good players can adapt and get into a group quickly.
“Harry (Maguire) came in very late in the transfer window and he had a great impact on the performances in the team.”
Solskjaer admits transfers are complicated
Bruno Fernandes is another that hit the ground running after arriving late in a transfer window last season.
However, Solskjaer has also made clear that he would like business done as quickly as possible.
“Well, you know, when we sit down and we discuss and we have plans, sometimes it doesn’t happen as planned. Life isn’t a straight line here. Sometimes things happen,” Solskjaer said.
“I’ve always said, these players…I’m very happy to work with them.
“Of course, I’m not going to take anything away from them either. We have to go into this season confident with how we did towards the end of the season.
“We need that consistency, of course, to start with. That’s key. And transfers, there’s still some time left of the transfer window. It might happen that we get someone in.
“I’ve worked with the club and they know what I feel this team and the squad needs. Let’s see if we can add to what we have.
“But the ones who are here have really taken a step forward and done themselves favours to be in the squad, moving forward.”