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Man Utd should sign Manuel Ugarte who was phenomenal vs Arsenal

Manchester United should consider a summer move for Sporting Lisbon midfielder Manuel Ugarte after his phenomenal performance against Arsenal in the Europa League.

The Uruguay international is regarded as one of the best young defensive midfielders and he enhanced his reputation yesterday with a splendid showing against the Gunners.

Sporting were tied 2-2 after the first leg of their Europa League round of 16 tie at home and they managed to stun Arsenal with a penalty shoot-out win at the Emirates Stadium.

Granit Xhaka gave an early lead to the hosts but Sporting levelled the scores with a moment of sheer brilliance. Pedro Goncalves unleashed a superb effort from the halfway line to beat Aaron Ramsdale.

A string of fantastic saves from Antonio Adan helped Sporting take the game to a penalty shoot-out. The Spaniard saved a spotkick from Gabriel Martinelli to seal an unlikely win for Sporting.

Goncalves and Adan made a big difference for Sporting last night, but Ugarte was the unsung hero after an incredible midfield display against Xhaka, Jorginho as well as Thomas Partey.

The 21-year-old missed the first leg in Lisbon due to accumulating three yellow cards, but he certainly made his presence felt at the Emirates with a superb all-round performance.

Ugarte received his matching orders right before the shoot-out after his second yellow card but he was exceptional prior to that with a stunning 13 duels and eight tackles won.

The youngster also completed 88 per cent of his passes while winning all four of his take-ons. We won’t be surprised if Ugarte secures a bigger challenge this summer and United should look at him.

Ugarte has the potential to develop into an elite holding midfielder and he could be seen as the ideal competitor and back-up to Casemiro in the number six position next term.

The club are currently pondering over the potential summer sale of Scott McTominay and Ugarte would be a clear upgrade on the Scot with his excellent defensive attributes.

However, he is unlikely to come on the cheap. He is valued at €25 million by Transfermarkt and Sporting could hold out for his €60m release clause . His contract only expires in June 2026.

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