Erik ten Hag is reportedly Manchester United’s new midfield target this summer as he looks to capitalize on Southampton’s potential relegation to the Championship.
Under Ten Hag’s direction, the Red Devils are having a great season. The club is still highly active in three additional tournaments this season in addition to the Carabao Cup, which it won on Sunday.
Hence, winning the FA Cup or the Europa League may be the icing on top of a fantastic campaign. But, United will also want to seal their Champions League return with a top-four Premier League result before those competitions are decided.
As a result, the Red Devils are beginning to make plans for the following stage of Ten Hag’s reconstruction effort. The United manager has thus far added nine new players, three of whom arrived in January after his six summer arrivals.
To further streamline his team, the United manager is prepared to get merciless before the summer transfer season. In order to achieve this, a report released on Wednesday claimed seven players who cost a combined £253 million might all be sold this summer.
That would significantly improve Ten Hag’s ability to improve his team as a result. However, the Dutchman would increase his transfer budget in the process in addition to freeing up a number of spots in his team.
Ten Hag will probably prioritize quality over quantity this summer as a result. And it appears that his major aims are to sign a top-line striker and a midfielder.
Man Utd is interested in signing Romeo Lavia
Any deal this summer to bring in a new striker would probably cost United a club record figure. They are focusing on Victor Osimhen and Harry Kane, and deals for either player would undoubtedly surpass the £100 million mark.
They also have grand intentions to bring in a new midfielder. Casemiro has shown to be a wise acquisition in the middle of the field. Ten Hag is aware that United can still do better, though.
As a result, this summer they are apparently looking for both Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice.
Deals for either player would be extremely expensive for United. In fact, West Ham is basing its assessment of Rice on Enzo Fernandez’s transfer to Chelsea. And as a result, any transaction would probably cost somewhere around £105 million.
Bellingham, another member of his England squad, appears prepared to push for even more. And according to the most recent sources, Borussia Dortmund, his club, is looking for a payment around £132 million (€150 million).
Deals for a brand-new star striker and a top midfielder might be out of reach for the Red Devils, though.
The Daily Mail asserts that Ten Hag is considering a deal for Southampton player Romeo Lavia as a compromise.
Since arriving to St. Mary’s from Manchester City in the summer, the 19-year-old has been a tremendous hit. Being a major admirer of the Belgium Under-21 international, Pep Guardiola, his departure from the Etihad came as bit of a ՏҺоc𝗸.
Lavia has confirmed his evident abilities by playing in 20 games for Saints this season. And Chelsea is already aware of his obvious potential thanks to that form.
Nevertheless, it’s also believed that City added a condition to his contract allowing them to re-sign Lavia for about £40 million. But, that won’t be operational until the summer of 2024, at the earliest.
United ready to take advantage of Southampton demise
But according to the source, United is now prepared to enter that competition and may be able to match Saints’ asking price of £40 million.
With only 18 points this year, the south coast club is stranded at the bottom of the standings.
And their relegation to the second division will increase optimism that United can secure his deal.
In the case of relegation, Saints would be forced to sell off their most valuable assets. And Lavia and Jimmy Ward-Prowse are seen to be their most sought-after players, with demand being high for the duo.
According to the Mail, Ten Hag thinks Lavia will be a major future star. And the teenager’s return to Manchester is what the Dutchman would most like to see happen.
Also, the Dutchman seems to think that the former City resident offers better value than Rice and Bellingham.
Yet at least one midfielder would likely go if he joined the team. Donny van de Beek is one of those who is most likely to leave, and Scott McTominay won’t be short of suitors for United.