Manchester United eyeing surprise swoop for Mateo Kovacic as Frenkie de Jong alternative – Man United News And Transfer News

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Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has identified the midfield as an area that needs a further injection of quality after suffering from several injury and suspension issues.

Those issues were exacerbated post the World Cup when Casemiro was suspended on three different occasions for a total of eight games.

Christian Eriksen and Donny van de Beek also got injured and were ruled out for the long-term. Scott McTominay suffered an injury and has not had the kind of impact as Erik ten Hag would have liked since his return.

United need further quality in midfield

United had to resort to the loan market to rectify the situation with Marcel Sabitzer arriving from Bayern Munich. And the remaining options are not good enough to sustain a challenge on multiple fronts.

Currently, the Austrian and much-maligned midfield pairing of McTominay and Fred are Ten Hag’s only options for three more Premier League games.

Ahead of next summer, the Red Devils have been linked with a plethora of midfielders with Ten Hag said to be still pining for a move for former protégé Frenkie de Jong.

If that move once again fails to materialise, they have a surprising new target — Mateo Kovacic of Chelsea. The Croatian is a versatile talent, capable of playing as the defensive midfielder as well as further up front.

The London club’s latest transfer dealings with their own players has emboldened United to make the approach according to 90min.

The Blues, under new ownership, prefer offering long contracts to their players and for players to either agree a deal or be sold in time for the club to make a decent profit.

“Kovacic is set to enter the final year of his contract and while Chelsea are keen for the player to stay, extension talks have not yet progressed beyond initial stages.

“Chelsea are looking to ensure no player leaves on a free transfer in future seasons and that may inevitably mean some first team players are sold if new contract agreements are not reached.

Kovacic could make dramatic switch

“Chelsea’s ownership want to avoid players entering the final two years of their deals in an ideal scenario,” the report mentioned.

The former Real Madrid man has advised his camp to weigh up the possibility of staying back in England in the event of a departure from Stamford Bridge.

The 20-time English league champions are not the only name in the list with Premier League rivals Manchester City and Liverpool also interested should a deal present itself.

The West-London side have recently sold Jorginho to rivals Arsenal while Mason Mount also looks close to departing. Kovacic, who has captained Chelsea on occasions this season, could prove to be a useful addition for Ten Hag.

 


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