Antony is likely to make his debut for Manchester United against Arsenal on Sunday afternoon following the completion of his imminent move to Old Trafford, according to reports. The Brazilian winger has been chased by the Red Devils all summer but looks set to finally sign on the dotted line after a full agreement was reached between United, Ajax and the player’s representatives last week.
Antony was spotted arriving at Carrington on Monday evening to thrash out the formalities of the switch, with Ajax set to receive a fee of around £85million in exchange for their prized asset. This figure represents a record-breaking amount of money for a player in the Eredivisie and those in power at United will be hoping that he justifies their decision to spend big by establishing himself as a leading member of the squad over the coming years.
It had been suggested that Antony could make his first appearance for United against Leicester City on Thursday evening, with his arrival at Old Trafford set to be officially announced within the next 24 hours. However, Sky Sports transfer expert Dharmesh Sheth has explained that a debut against Arsenal is the most likely scenario, with a few loose ends still needing to be tied up over the next few days.
“He has to be registered by midday on Wednesday if he is to feature in Manchester United’s next Premier League game, which is away at Leicester on Thursday,” Sheth told The Transfer Show.
“I’m told that might be a bit of a stretch, simply because he’ll need a visa and a work permit. We’re more likely to see Antony performing for Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday against Arsenal.”
United boss Erik ten Hag will be delighted to reunite with Antony when his move is officially confirmed, with the 22-year-old having excelled under the Dutchman’s guidance during his time in charge of Ajax. The switch will see United’s spending total in the summer window rise above £220m, which is set to mark a record outlay for the Red Devils.
The club have been accused of splashing too much cash on Antony by some onlookers, with the agreed £85m fee eclipsing those paid by Liverpool and Manchester City for the services of Darwin Nunez and Erling Haaland respectively. However, United legend Paul Scholes recently insisted that almost every top club has been guilty of paying over the odds for a new signing at some point.
“I think you just have to ignore the money these days,” said Scholes in his role as a pundit on BT Sport over the weekend.
“The money is just ridiculous for every single player. He’s a very talented player. You could probably sit here and say the money is a bit too much for him, but as I said the money is just crazy these days, it’s stopping players from moving.”
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