With so much speculation surrounding Manchester United and their players at the minute, it’s hard to pinpoint what is facts and what is fiction. There have been rumors this week about Antony going to Brazil with Gabriel Barbosa coming the other way, and Raphael Varane has also been linked with a move due to being dropped for Harry Maguire in back-to-back games.
As always, a lot of what is published about Manchester United is fiction, so we are going to take a look at each rumor and tell you how believable it is.
Manchester United – The January Low-Down:
Antony To Brazil?
Antony to Brazil is an easy link to make due to the fact Gabriel Barbosa and Antony have the same agent. Fabrizio Romano however feels there’s no truth in the situation. Antony is fully expected to stay at Manchester United until at least the end of the season, with his situation being evaluated there.
The Gabriel Barbosa links are however closer to the truth. Manchester United are looking for a cheaper option for the striker spot in January to help Rasmus Hojlund. Barbosa is on a list alongside players like Mehdi Taremi. If United signs Barbosa, Antony will not be going the other way.
There are no signs of Jadon Sancho and Erik ten Hag making up after their recent fallout, and all signs are pointing towards the exit door for Sancho. Erik ten Hag will not allow him to train with the team unless he apologizes, and there is no intention on the side of Sancho for that to happen.
United are open to letting Sancho leave in January. Borussia Dortmund is interested and informed of the situation. A loan with an option to buy remains the most likely scenario for both parties at the moment. Fabrizio Romano maintains there is a 99.9% chance Sancho’s time at Manchester United is over.
Manchester United are making no secret of the fact they’re in the market for a center-back. United are openly scouting defenders to improve the team in the coming months, and although unlikely January can not be ruled out as a potential route to bring in a new player.
Jean-Clair Todibo seems the most likely player at the moment. United are long-term admirers of Todibo, and the fact he plays for Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s Nice makes it an easy deal to do. Goncalo Inacio is also another player United admire, and Antonio Silva cannot be ruled out.
Despite Raphael Varane not starting for United as of late, the club has no immediate plans to sell the French defender. Varane’s availability is a worry for the club, but January is likely to be too soon to offload the defender. It’s more likely United will sign a defender in January than sell one. Varane has interest from Saudi clubs, but nothing concrete has been put forward as of yet. He remains committed to Manchester United.
Loans For Fringe Players:
Amad and Facundo Pellistri could potentially go on loan in January. It’s expected that one of the two will go on loan, with Pellistri currently the more likely of the two. Amad has been out injured since June but fits the profile of an Erik ten Hag winger more than Pellistri at the moment. The Ivorian winger will return to first-team training this week, and the club will monitor his development from there.
A Partner For Hojlund?
Rasmus Hojlund is getting no support up top for Manchester United, but United are hoping to give him some by signing a new striker. The thought process is to sign a veteran striker to ease the burden on the young Dane. Mehdi Taremi is a man the club has followed for some time, and the feeling is if United are to go for a striker, Taremi is the most likely.
The Right-Back Situation:
It is heavily reported Erik ten Hag wants another option for the right-back. Jeremie Frimpong has been linked since the Dutch manager came into the club, and now Galatasaray right-back Sacha Boey has began to be linked. ten Hag has always liked attacking full-backs, and while Diogo Dalot and Aaron Wan-Bissaka can offer that, it’s not to the same level the manager wants.
Boey is one to keep an eye on for United, with the player reportedly available for around £21million.