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Manchester United lead Real Madrid in race to sign Turkish defender

Manchester United are busy trying to find the best solutions in the transfer market to strengthen their squad ahead of Erik ten Hag’s first season in charge.

It won’t surprise anyone if the Dutchman decides to prioritise a centre-back as one of his primary signings, and we’ve already seen the links to Jurrien Timber and Pau Torres.

Now a new name has been thrown into the mix.

According to Tutto Atalanta, United are believed to be in pole position (ahead of Real Madrid) to sign Merih Demiral from Juventus.

The 24-year-old has impressed on loan at Atalanta and the report states that the Red Devils may already have an agreement in place to sign the Turkish defender, who has 33 international caps to his name.

Demiral struggled for game time at Juventus but the move to Atalanta has done him good. They have an option to buy the striker and that could see them look to negotiate a similar deal that took Christian Romero to Tottenham last year.

That was when Atalanta signed Romero on a permanent transfer, before agreeing a deal to send him to Tottenham – all in a bid to make a significant profit.

Ten Hag will need to look at his options going into next season, too.

Phil Jones will be leaving next month and, on top of that, it doesn’t sound like Eric Bailly has a future at the club.

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