Manchester United are reportedly as close as ever to finally bringing in highly touted midfielder Donny van de Beek from Ajax this summer. According to Marcel van der Saar and Mike Verweij of De Telegraaf, officials at the Dutch giant are ready to accept United’s offer of around 40 to 45 million euros for the 23-year-old Dutch international.
This could serve as a massive coup for the once dynastic Manchester United as van de Beek has been linked to a plethora of massive clubs from across Europe, including Real Madrid and Barcelona. But with Real Madrid focusing more on developing who they already have and Barcelona in absolute shambles, United seem to be the perfect destination for the midfielder. Additionally, United and Ajax have a strong bond with former Red Devils’ goalkeeper Eddwin Van Der Saar currently serving as Ajax’s CEO.
Before this news arose, it’s fair to say that United have been oddly quiet so far this summer in the transfer market. Besides trying and failing to bring in Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund, all they’ve actually done is welcome back some returning loanees like Marcos Rojo, Chris Smalling, and Dean Henderson. The most important decision they’ve made all summer was finally saying goodbye to winger Alexis Sanchez, who is now at Inter Milan on a permanent basis. So a move to this degree could help quell many concerns within United’s mammoth fan base.
Here’s a little information on the soon-to-be newest Red Devil.
The 23-year-old started his career within the famed Ajax Youth Academy in Amsterdam back in 2008. And along with guys like Frenkie de Jong and Matthijs de Ligt, van de Beek helped lead the new Dutch generation at “de Godenzonen”. Over his five season run at Ajax, he appeared 175 times, including in 45 times in both the Champions League and Europa League, and was also a key part to the 2018-19 run that say his side reach the UCL semifinals.
Over this past season, van de Beek played either as a regular central midfielder or up a little bit as an attacking midfielder. However, if he does complete the move to Old Trafford, look for him to dip into that central midfield as United already have Bruno Fernandes locked up as the club’s AM. van de Beek can also be seen in a more defensive midfield position, which may be a necessary move if United are unable to lock up a new central defender this window.
Now the question should arise whether or not this move could help spur on United as they attempt to capture their first Premier League trophy since the the 2012-13 season. While picking up someone as talented and experienced as van de Beek should be viewed as a triumph for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his team, this shouldn’t end of their plan this summer. Sure, United did finish third in the Prem and earned a spot into the Champions League, but they were 33 points off first place Liverpool and 15 points off second place Manchester City. If they have any intentions of challenging these two clubs that also happen to be their two biggest rivals, they’re going to need to do way more.
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Featured Image – AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth