Manchester United are determined to sign Ajax’s Antony and PSV Eindhoven’s Cody Gakpo in the final days of the transfer window, De Telegraaf’s Marcel van der Kraan reports.
The Red Devils have already spent over £120 million on four players in Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen, Lisandro Martinez and Casemiro, but there could be plenty of more arrivals.
Bolstering the attack is one of the prime priorities for manager Erik ten Hag, and Van der Kraan reveals the club want to sign both Antony and Gakpo, not one or the other.
Gakpo is already aware of the Red Devils’ interest, but he is currently focused on the second leg of the Champions League play-off tie against Rangers in midweek.
Meanwhile, it is reported that the next 48 hours could determine whether United can make a breakthrough in negotiations with Ajax for Antony’s services.
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Antony has been Ten Hag’s main attacking target throughout the summer. United have already failed with two bids of £51m and £68m respectively to sign the Brazilian.
Ajax are currently firm on their £85m valuation for the player despite his transfer plea. The onus is on United to meet their demands or else the club are prepared to keep him.
The next few days could be critical to finding an agreement. With three years left on his deal, Ajax don’t feel any pressure to sell, and United may end up paying the required fee.
In case of Gakpo, United may face a similar situation with PSV particularly if they qualify for the Champions League. They are tied on 2-2 after the play-off first leg versus Rangers.
PSV are eyeing a package of around £38-42m plus add-ons for the player, and may stick to their valuation. The duo should provide much-needed creativity for United this term.
While Antony is a specialist right-sided winger, Gakpo operates pre-dominantly on the left flank.
Hence, they won’t be directly fighting for places in the starting XI. The pressure will rather be on Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford to perform at a higher level to stake claim for places.
It should only be regarded as a good thing as United need competition for positions. This will get the best out of players, who will be aware that inconsistency could lead to being dropped.
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