Good evening, Manchester United fans. Here are your evening headlines for Monday, August 31.
Why United have moved for Van de Beek
The Dutchman is the latest in a long line of players from his country to join United – the standouts being Jaap Stam, Ruud van Nistelrooy, and Robin van Persie – and the midfielder has been on the club’s radar for a number of months.
Van de Beek, who won his tenth international cap in November 2019, has played more than 100 games for Ajax and has a Champions League semi-final goal to his name at the age of 23.
But there is more behind United’s decision to push ahead with his the signing right now.
Samuel Luckhurst explains why, despite interest in other targets such as Jack Grealish and James Maddison, Van de Beek fits in with United’s transfer strategy and makes perfect sense for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team at this moment in time.
What Van de Beek signing means for Sancho pursuit
While Manchester United’s outlay on Van de Beek will be considerable, it won’t necessarily be their final piece of big-money business this summer.
There have already been departures away from Old Trafford, with Alexis Sanchez leaving on a permanent basis and several youngsters farmed out on loan, but conversations around a move for Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho refuse to go away.
Despite Van de Beek’s imminent arrival, MEN Sport understands United are still pushing for a deal to bring Sancho to the club before October’s transfer deadline day.
Despite Dortmund’s insistence the England winger will stay at the club, United are continuing to work on a deal involving add-ons, with a fee potentially rising to £108m.
The Reds are also still understood to be working on an agreement concerning Sancho’s wage demands.
If United are unable to complete a deal for the former Manchester City youngster, they may turn towards other targets, with Juventus’ Douglas Costa and Bournemouth’s David Brooks both understood to be on their radar.
United youngster set for international debut
Young midfielder Dylan Levitt is yet to fully make his mark in Manchester United’s first-team, but he is in line for a senior international debut in the coming days.
The 19-year-old was handed his United bow last term, playing the full 90 minutes as a youthful side lost 2-1 to Astana in the Europa League group stage, but has yet to add to that appearance.
However, Levitt is expected to make his senior Wales debut after being handed a call-up by Ryan Giggs and seeing a number of senior players drop out of the squad due to injury.
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Aaron Ramsey and David Brooks have been ruled out, while Joe Allen was omitted from Giggs’ initial squad due to his own injury issues.
This means Levitt, who was handed his first senior Wales call-up in May 2019 but has yet to get on the pitch under Giggs, has moved up the pecking order.
Wales are due to take on Finland and Bulgaria in a UEFA Nations League double-header in September, with United winger Daniel James among the players included in Giggs’ squad.