Sun. Oct 25th, 2020

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How Man United’s deadline day move for Ousmane Dembele collapsed

2 min read

Manchester United saw a loan move for Ousmane Dembele collapse when he refused to sign a contract extension at Barcelona on Monday. 

The French winger was targeted by United after they failed to prise Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund.

Barca said initially they only wanted to sell Dembele as they sought to raise the necessary cash to pay for Memphis Depay’s £23m transfer from Lyon. United refused and Barca’s need for cash grew.

United's loan move for Dembele collapsed when he refused to sign a new contract with Barca

United’s loan move for Dembele collapsed when he refused to sign a new contract with Barca

They agreed a compromise of a substantial loan fee and United paying Dembele’s wages.

The problem came when Barca asked him to sign a contract extension until 2023 — they did not want Dembele returning after a potentially strong season only to be in a weaker position to demand a large fee for a player who would only have one year left.

A disgruntled Dembele refused and the move collapsed — as did Barca’s plan for Depay, with La Liga chiefs stepping in to block the move as the Catalan club could not afford the fee. Dembele is now looking to leave in January with his future uncertain.

West Ham manager David Moyes was left bristling after his club put a loan deal in place for Chelsea defender Fikayo Tomori. 

The French winger was targeted by United after they failed to sign Jadon Sancho (above)

The French winger was targeted by United after they failed to sign Jadon Sancho (above)

Barcelona initially wanted to sell Dembele to raise the cash to pay for Memphis Depay

Barcelona initially wanted to sell Dembele to raise the cash to pay for Memphis Depay

They acceded to what they considered a ‘huge agent fee’, lined up the paperwork and were ready to sign when, with 10 minutes to go, Tomori decided he didn’t want to join after all — believed to be due to a lack of assurances over playing time.

Antonio Rudiger also emerged as defensive target for West Ham, as well as for Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho. 

But the Chelsea defender showed apprehension towards both loan moves, knowing it could impact his relationship with Blues supporters if he joined one of their London rivals and returned to Stamford Bridge next season.

Hammers winger Felipe Anderson has agreed his season loan to Porto.

The 27-year-old Brazilian, a £36m signing from Lazio, fell out of favour but will now play in the Champions League with Porto — facing Manchester City, Marseille and Olympiacos. 

He will be joined at the Portuguese champions by Chelsea defender Malang Sarr, also on loan for the season. 

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