Manchester United Target Highly-Rated Dayot Upamecano

Tom Gott
Aug 31, 2020, 11:46 AM GMT+1
Man Utd are interested in Upamecano
Man Utd are interested in Upamecano | Maja Hitij/Getty Images

After agreeing a deal to sign Ajax midfielder Donny van de Beek, Manchester United will turn their attention to finding a new centre-back, with RB Leipzig's Dayot Upamecano at the top of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's wish list.

United had hoped to be further ahead with their transfer business than they currently are, but have been frustrated in their efforts to land top target Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund, with the German side adamant that he will not be sold.

Negotiations over Sancho have been slow
Negotiations over Sancho have been slow | DeFodi Images/Getty Images

Solskjaer wants to ensure that his squad is strengthened before United begin the new season on September 19, so he has switched his attention to bolstering in other positions. Van de Beek will address problems in midfield, and ESPN believe Upamecano has been identified as the man to fix United's defence.

Finding a top quality centre-back to play alongside Harry Maguire is high on Solskjaer's agenda, with the boss unconvinced by the current crop of Victor Lindelöf, Eric Bailly, Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo and Chris Smalling.

21-year-old Upamecano enjoyed a hugely impressive season in both the Bundesliga and Champions League and was recently rewarded with a new contract which removed his £54m release clause.

Upamecano may have a bargain release clause next summer
Upamecano may have a bargain release clause next summer | Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

The new deal is understood to contain a £38m release clause which will only become active next summer, but United believe that a deal can be struck this summer and they intend to push forward with negotiations.

To help finance the deal, Jones, Rojo and Smalling are all expected to be sold in the coming weeks, while no guarantees can be made about the futures of Lindelöf, Bailly or young Axel Tuanzebe - all of whom Solskjaer has concerns about.

United will likely be eager to get a deal for Upamecano over the line as soon as possible as the Frenchman has attracted interest from almost all of Europe's top sides, and his bargain release clause will almost certainly spark a bidding war next summer.

Real Madrid, Chelsea and Arsenal are just three of many sides who have been heavily linked with Upamecano in recent months, and many others will join in the fun if reports of that £38m release clause prove to be true.

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