Manchester United are locked in talks with three other players amid their continued efforts to land Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong this summer, according to reports. The Red Devils are yet to confirm any pre-season arrivals but have been linked with plenty of exciting targets as Erik ten Hag looks to rebuild the club’s playing squad in advance of the new campaign.
United are known to be keen admirers of De Jong, who excelled under Ten Hag’s guidance at Ajax before joining Barcelona and is believed to be closing in on a move to Old Trafford after weeks of negotiations. The Red Devils are busy on a number of other fronts, though, and could be set to wrap up a number of deals after De Jong signs on the dotted line, according to Fabrizio Romano.
It is claimed that United remain actively involved in discussions with multiple targets including Ajax winger Antony, who has reportedly been lined up to boost Ten Hag’s forward line next season. However, it remains to be seen whether a fee can be agreed at club level, with The Mirror having claimed that Ajax are unwilling to sell the 22-year-old for anything less than £70million.
Antony’s team-mate Jurrien Timber is also said to remain in talks with United despite having failed to agree a move to Old Trafford over the course of the summer to date. He emerged as a target following the end of last season but is believed to have reservations over whether he would be a regular starter at United as he looks to earn a place in the Netherlands squad ahead of this year’s World Cup in Qatar.
Meanwhile, a move for Ajax defender Lisandro Martinez is also being discussed, with Ten Hag said to have identified the addition of a new defender among his main objectives ahead of the new Premier League season. Martinez is also being tracked by Arsenal, though, with the Gunners having already seen an opening bid rejected for the 24-year-old’s services.
It seems as though United will need to act quickly in order to achieve their goals in the summer market after being widely criticised for their lack of signings in comparison to their divisional rivals thus far. Former Premier League goalkeeper Paddy Kenny recently suggested that United fans should be concerned by their club’s failure to bring any players in this summer, with the likes of Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal having already moved quickly to strengthen their ranks.
“I think it is worrying times for Man United, I’m not going to lie,” Kenny told Football Insider. “The way they have gone over the last three or four seasons, they just seem to be going backwards for me.
“It will be interesting to see if anyone comes in soon because they are meant to be going through an overhaul. I think the fans should be worried, Liverpool and Tottenham have plenty of players coming in, Arsenal too, so Man United need to get some players in.”
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