United’s top priority transfer target all summer has been Jadon Sancho, but with Borussia Dortmund not willing to negotiate on their £110 million valuation, a deal is yet to be struck.
Dembele has been identified as an alternative, and United have reportedly contacted Barca and the player’s representatives over a possible loan deal, while the Catalan club are said to prefer a permanent deal.
The 23-year-old was regarded as one of Europe’s finest young talents when he left Borussia Dortmund for Camp Nou in 2017, but his mega-money move to Spain hasn’t worked out.
After lengthy spells on the sidelines with injuries and reports that he has consistently turned up late to training, ex-United midfielder Fletcher warned his former side over the risks of bringing Dembele to Old Trafford and suggested a loan deal may be more suitable than a permanent signing.
‘It suggests that they are moving on from Jadon Sancho, Fletcher told Sky Sports. ‘I think Ousmane Dembele’s a right-winger, a position they are finally identifying.
‘Barcelona purchased him for £100m or something like that. I think a loan deal would suit United, and probably both parties, I think he needs a fresh challenge, coming to a massive club like Manchester United.
‘It comes with its risks – his injury record is not great over the last few seasons – I think he only made five league appearances last season, but he’s a talented player.
‘It’s a chance to showcase himself, get opportunities, get fit and potentially look for a transfer down the line, but I wouldn’t say they’ve got to sign him because of his injury record, and he has tendencies to be late a lot of the time judging by reports.
‘United should give him the opportunity to showcase himself and be the player everyone thought he was going to become.’
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