Surprise new name touted as Solskjaer draws up three-man defender wish list

James Marshment
Diogo Jota, Tyrone Mings

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has three targets in mind as he looks to strengthen his central defence.

Solskjaer is set to put plans to sign a new striker on hold thanks to the electric form of his front three. That news will come as a blow to one Nigerian attacker, who has opened the door on a move to Old Trafford.

Reports earlier this week claimed Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake had emerged as a strong contender.

The Norwegian manager allegedly informed the left-footed centre-back of his intention to sign a player of his ilk. Indeed, the Daily Telegraph backed up such claims.

Bournemouth will reportedly listen to offers of around £40million for Ake, who is also allegedly of interest to Chelsea.

However, ESPN reports that Ake isn’t the only left-footed defensive option open to Solskjaer. As per the report, the United boss has two other contenders in mind as he looks to find a long-term partner to Harry Maguire.

And Villa defender Tyrone Mings is also emerging as a player of genuine interest to the United boss, despite his struggles this season.

Mings is the mainstay of an Aston Villa defence which has been breached 62 times in 33 games and yet the Englishman has largely escaped criticism.

The 27-year-old would also command a fee of around £40m and would surely look to move on were Villa to be relegated.



Both Mings and Ake are left footed and that appears to be a key factor in Solskjaer’s thinking.

A third and more ambitious target has also been touted in the shape of AC Milan captain Alessio Romagnoli. The Italy defender, considered one of Milan’s most important stars, is rated in the £60m bracket by the Serie A side.

His strong association with Milan – together with his higher value – makes a deal for the 25-year-old less likely, however.



Mason Greenwood

United’s wish to strengthen their defence has become more of a focus due to the fine form of their attack.

Previous plans to sign a new striker now look to have been abandoned.

As such, Glenn Hoddle believes Mason Greenwood “will push Marcus Rashford out” of the side due to his superior finishing.

Greenwood has been in sensational form over the last couple of matches. He provided an assist and a goal in the win over Brighton before scoring a brace against Bournemouth.

Rashford has started 26 Premier League matches for United this season, compared to Greenwood’s seven. But former England boss Hoddle reckons that could soon reverse.

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