Manchester United spent the majority of last summer chasing players Erik ten Hag knew and was familiar with. Roughly nine months later, you could say that United’s strategy of allowing Ten Hag to dictate their targets has been vindicated.
The majority of players Ten Hag has brought have had a sizeable impact on United’s season, with Casemiro, Christian Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez impressing in particular.
United failed to land two of Ten Hag’s top targets last year, however. Frenkie de Jong, the Barcelona midfielder, was the priority target but the Dutchman never wanted to leave the Catalan giants, making any deal impossible.
Further back, centre-back Jurrien Timber was the preferred option but the 21-year-old ended up staying at Ajax. United signed the other half of Ajax’s centre-back pairing instead.
Now, it is being reported that Timber is keen on leaving the Dutch giants. That’s according to 90min, who say that Timber has instructed his representatives to explore a route out of Ajax.
As per the report, United have prioritised signing a striker and midfielder this coming summer but they are keen on signing a centre-back and right-back if an opportunity would present itself.
Timber enjoyed his senior breakthrough under Ten Hag at Ajax and he could now find himself as the subject of more interest from Old Trafford.
United’s summer transfer activity will be dictated by the potential change of ownership as well as the club’s ability to generate funds through sales.
Timber would most likely set United back quite a bit and therefore, it will be paramount to offset some of that cost by selling players Ten Hag is not planning with.
Eric Bailly will be among that group and Harry Maguire, who has dropped down to fourth-choice this season, is likely to be available on the market as well.