Manchester United are advancing with a possible loan deal for Wout Weghorst as the January transfer window enters its second week.
Manchester Evening News reported on Saturday that United are keen on a move for Netherlands forward Weghorst. Erik ten Hag is looking to replace Cristiano Ronaldo with a short-term loan deal for the remainder of the season and the 30-year-old has emerged as a potential option.
Meanwhile, United look set to battle it out with Chelsea for the signing of Joao Felix, as reports continue to link the two Premier League clubs with the 23-year-old. A sizeable loan fee is seemingly a stumbling block but, as the window ticks by, the pressure will mount on Atletico Madrid to lower their asking price.
Elsewhere, United have “laughed off” speculation that Harry Maguire could be set to leave Old Trafford this month. Ten Hag is eager to keep hold of his captain for the remainder of the season, despite the former Leicester man falling down the club’s pecking order.
TODAY’S BIG TALKING POINT: Is Ten Hag right to keep hold of Maguire? Have your say here .
Catch up with the latest news, views and transfer rumours from Monday with updates below.
Scroll below for transfer updates
So that brings our latest United transfer blog to a conclusion.
Scroll below for news, rumours and updates from Old Trafford.
United make Depay enquiry – reports
United are reported to have asked Barcelona about re-signing Memphis Depay.
Depay spent 18 months at Old Trafford between 2015 and 2017 when he underwhelmed.
However, the Dutchman went on to become a top player at Lyon.
United are on the lookout for somebody to replace Cristiano Ronaldo – and Wout Weghorst has been earmarked as a target as the club continue to work on a swoop for him. Meanwhile, reports from Spanish publication Sport indicate Erik ten Hag would also be keen on Depay.
OPINION – Who should replace De Gea?
David de Gea finds himself in an odd position at United right now.
Having served the club with distinction for 11 coming up 12 seasons, the Spaniard totted-up his 511th appearance during the FA Cup win over Everton at Old Trafford on Friday night. He was impressive in preceding victories against Bournemouth and Wolves and yet, bizarrely, effectively finds himself on trial under Erik ten Hag.
But that has nothing to do with ability. Withstanding one or two question marks along the way – and a prolonged form dip which he addressed last season – De Gea has been up there among the best goalkeepers on the planet throughout his Premier League journey.
Continue reading this here >>>
Pick your starting XI vs Charlton
Next six Premier League fixtures
United are set for Carabao Cup duty against Charlton on Tuesday night.
Here are the next six Premier League fixtures they have to contend with;
Saturday, January 14 vs Man City (H) at 12.30pm
Sunday, January 22 vs Arsenal (A) at 4.30pm
Saturday, February 4 vs Crystal Palace (H) at 3pm
Sunday, February 12 vs Leeds (A) at 2pm
Sunday, February 19 vs Leicester (H) at 2pm
Sunday, February 26 vs Brentford (H) at 1.30pm
Dalot addresses contract discussions
Diogo Dalot says talks are progressing over a new contract for him.
United triggered their one-year option on the player last month.
It means the Portugal defender is currently tied down at Old Trafford until 2024.
I think we are in a position to say that we are talking about it, we are negotiating, we are seeing how both parties will benefit. It is no secret I am happy to be here.
How Should the Reds line-up on Tuesday night?
LONG READ – How United missed out on signing Bale
Bale retired from football this afternoon at the age of 33.
At one stage he was seen as one of the most promising wingers of his generation.
United attempted to bring Bale to Old Trafford and MEN Sport has taken a look at why a move never worked out.
Read more here.
REPORT – Chelsea project appealed more to Felix
According to The Athletic, Felix was more interested in the project at Stamford Bridge than the one presented to him at United.
It is also claimed that a ‘verbal agreement’ has been put in place between Chelsea and Atleti for the loan switch.
Graham Potter’s side are claimed to be giving Atletico Madrid £9m to sign him for the rest of the season.
United told the secret to their improved defence
Former United defender Mikael Silvestre has explained that not one member of the Reds defence is more important than another at the moment.
Speaking to bettingexpert, he said:
First of all, in a 1-v-1 situation, the United defenders are much more solid and aggressive. And then as a unit, when they’ve played with the same back four for a series of games, they’ve shown that they are harder to beat than in previous seasons. It’s not only the back four, I think everyone is committed to the defensive tasks which wasn’t the case earlier. You have two World Cup winners (Martinez and Varane) in United’s defence, so it’s not bad. I don’t want to single out one player because they’ve all played their part. Even Wan-Bissaka, who’s not been playing, came and did the job. I think they’re all important. With the amount of games they’re playing, everyone is important.
Bookies suspend betting on Felix to join Chelsea
After a flurry of bets this afternoon, Betfair has taken the decision to suspend their market on Atletico Madrid striker Felix joining United’s Premier League rivals.
The Reds were understood to be interested in the Portuguese striker at one stage. However, MEN Sport understands that attention has now turned to Weghorst.
Commenting on the decision to suspend the market, Betfair spokesperson Sam Rosbottom said:
We have suspended betting on Chelsea to sign Atletico Madrid forward Joao Felix following a huge amount of bets on Monday. A move to Chelsea was an incredibly popular selection. Last week, Chelsea were 5/2 to sign Felix, before a flurry of bets saw us suspend the market on Monday afternoon. Looking at what impact his signing could have, Chelsea are now 6/1 to finish in the Premier League top four, but less fancied than Man City, Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool, Newcastle and Tottenham to play Champions League football next season.
REPORT – United reach out to Memphis Depay
According to Sport, United have reached out to the representatives of Barcelona man Memphis Depay.
It is claimed that the Reds are looking at their former striker to add depth to their forward line.
However, the report also claims that Arsenal have also contacted the Dutchman.
How should United line-up vs Charlton tomorrow?
Gareth Bale retires from football
Away from the Reds briefly as Gareth Bale has announced that he has retired from club and international football at the age of 33.
In a statement, he wrote:
After careful and thoughtful consideration, I announce my immediate retirement from club and international football. I feel incredibly fortunate to have realised my dream of playing the sport I love. It has truly given me some of the best moments of my life. The highest of highs over 17 seasons, that will be impossible to replicate, no matter what the next chapter has in store for me. From my very first touch at Southampton to my last with LAFC and everything in between, shaped a club career that I have an immense pride and gratitude for. Playing for and captaining my country 111 times has truly been a dream come true. To show my gratitude to all of those that have played their part along this journey, feels like an impossibility. I feel indebted to many people for helping to change my life and shape my career in a way I couldn’t have ever dreamed of when I first started out at 9 years old. To my previous clubs, Southampton, Tottenham, Real Madrid and finally LAFC. All of my previous managers and coaches, back room staff, team mates, all the dedicated fans, my agents, my amazing friends and family, the impact you have had is immeasurable. My parents and my sister, without your dedication in those early days, without such a strong foundation, I wouldn’t be writing this statement right now, so thank you for putting me on this path and for your unwavering support. My wife and my children, your love and support has carried me through. Right beside me for all the highs and lows, keeping me grounded along the way. You inspire me to be better, and to make you proud. So, I move on with anticipation to the next stage of my life. A time of change and transition, an opportunity for a new adventure…
Ten Hag aiming for trophies
One step at a time.#MUFC || #MondayMotivation pic.twitter.com/auBnfWGb0N
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) January 9, 2023
Besiktas issue statement on Wout Weghorst
Turkish giants Besiktas have released a brief statement to describe reports that striker Wout Weghorst will leave the club in the next 24 hours as ‘fictitious’.
United are thought to be advancing with talks to sign the 30-year-old Dutch forward, but it now appears that a move could be in doubt.
On Monday, Besiktas released a statement on the matter, which read:
“The claim that there is an exit clause in our football player’s contract, stating that his contract can be terminated with a compensation of 2.5 million Euros in case of an offer from the Premier League, is fictitious. However, the news that the player in question will leave the team on Tuesday is completely untrue. The initiative regarding Wout Weghorst belongs entirely to Beşiktaş. If there is a development on this issue, the information will be shared.”
Why United vs Charlton Athletic is not on TV
United overcame Burnley in the last round of the Carabao Cup, with Christian Eriksen and Marcus Rashford both on the scoresheet in the 2-0 victory last month.
Erik ten Hag’s side will now face Charlton Athletic in the quarter-finals on Tuesday night. However, the match, which kicks off at 8pm, will not be shown live on TV for fans in the UK as Newcastle vs Leicester was picked for TV instead.
Ipswich ‘interested’ in United youngster
According to Football League World, Ipswich Town are one of the clubs interested in United striker Charlie McNeill.
It comes after The Manchester Evening News reported that the Reds were open to letting the academy star leave the club on loan this month.
The League One club are managed by former United coach Kieran McKenna.
WATCH: Martial goal vs Aston Villa
United secured a 4-2 victory over Aston Villa in the third round of the Carabao Cup in November.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) January 9, 2023
OPINION: United might have hinted at Champions League need
Manchester United might be casting around in the bargain bucket for a striker this month, but the recruitment department’s ‘main focus’ remains on the summer transfer window.
United are reluctant to enter the mid-season market, despite the success of January 2020 addition Bruno Fernandes, and the only reason they’re involved this month is due to the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo. The fact that 30-year-old Wout Weghorst, scorer of two goals in 20 Premier League games last season, has landed at the top of the list indicates the lack of funds available this month to strengthen Erik ten Hag’s squad.
If United were trying to make this move last January then it would almost certainly have gone down badly, but the success rate of Ten Hag’s summer buys and the results he’s achieved since taking over have earned him leeway to target who he wants and the faith that there is some method behind it.
But planning for the summer window is going to be complicated at this stage by a couple of factors. One is whether United will return to the Champions League and earn the riches that come with a seat at Europe’s top table. The other is the identity of the club’s owners come the summer.
Click here to read the full story.
Man United Q&A
The MEN’s Chief United writer Samuel Luckhurst will be on hand to answer all your questions on transfers, the Charlton Carabao Cup tie, the derby vs Man City and more!
To ask a question, just follow this link, log in or sign up for free and submit your question in the comments.
Find more here.
United’s January fixtures
The Reds will play five more times before the end of January, including four times in just 12 days. Here are United’s next five fixtures:
- Charlton Athletic (H) – Carabao Cup (QF) – Wednesday, January 10 (8pm)
- Manchester City (H) – Premier League – Saturday, January 14 (12:30pm)
- Crystal Palace (A) – Premier League – Wednesday, January 18 (8pm)
- Arsenal (A) – Premier League – Sunday, January 22 (4:30pm)
- Reading (H) – FA Cup (R4) – Saturday, January 28* (*date and KO time tbc)
United ‘interested’ in Pickford
According to journalist Nicolò Schira, United are exploring a move for England and Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford next summer.
The 28-year-old has been linked with a move to Old Trafford at various times in recent years, but with David de Gea’s future still unclear, a transfer could be a realistic option this year.
Pickford has made 217 appearances for the Toffees, registering 57 clean sheets.
#Tottenham and #ManchesterUnited are interested in signing #Everton’s goalkeeper Jordan #Pickford for the next season. #transfers #THFC #MUFC
— Nicolò Schira (@NicoSchira) January 8, 2023
Weghorst is a bold call Erik ten Hag has earned at Manchester United
Wout Weghorst is such an obvious option for Manchester United nobody thought to mention him until their interest emerged on Saturday.
Weghorst is Dutch and has played in the Eredivisie, two consistent threads with the majority of United’s signings under Erik ten Hag. In a January United have resorted to the loan market for a striker, Weghorst represents some progress from Odion Ighalo.
United would be getting a support striker with Premier League experience and recent World Cup pedigree, having extended the Netherlands’ shelf life by 30 minutes with two goals in their pugnacious World Cup quarter-final with Argentina.
Read on here.
United Women training hard
Weghorst confident of completing Manchester United loan transfer
Wout Weghorst is confident of completing a loan move to Manchester United as negotiations continue to terminate his loan with Besiktas.
Weghorst, 30, is on a season-long loan from Championship leaders Burnley, who do not have a recall clause, but United enquired about Weghorst on Thursday and he effectively bid farewell to Besiktas fans after scoring the winning goal against Kasimpasa on Friday night.
Although United sources say discussions with Weghorst are exploratory, sources in the Netherlands believe an agreement is close.
Read on here.
Rashford keeps scoring
Ten Hag has just been handed another January transfer window headache
January is going to be a challenging month for Manchester United. The fact that the Premier League clash against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park has now been set for January 18 means the Reds will play four games in just 12 days, and five times in total before the end of the month.
The clash with Patrick Vieira’s side was postponed back in September following the death of Queen Elizabeth II. It was, admittedly, always going to be difficult to reschedule it on a date that worked well for both parties, but it certainly feels like United have come out worse in terms of the new date. It gives supporters just nine days to make any arrangements, and for Ten Hag ‘s side, the pressure will still be on to continue their winning run.
Read on here.
United told what Weghorst would bring to Old Trafford
Rene Meulensteen has explained what Wout Weghorst would bring to United.
“He is different, that is why Ten Hag is bringing him in,” former Manchester United first-team coach Meulensteen told BBC Sport. “He offers something else that the other Manchester United forwards don’t have – but I don’t think he will be a starter every game.
“He is tall, standing at 6ft 6in, and if United need to go a bit more direct and play off the knockdown, he is the type of guy that can offer that in the box. He is good at link-up play too, you can give him the ball then play through him.
“He is a good character who is determined, a hard worker and a fighter – those are his biggest traits. He is a nice lad too and there is no nonsense with him – Weghorst will put a shift in for the team.
“He possesses all the qualities Ten Hag wants in a player and so will fit in at United.”
How Lisandro Martinez can solidify comparison to a Manchester United legend
A centre-back signing quickly becoming a fan favourite thanks to his uncompromising defending, warrior-like tackling and playing with his heart on his sleeve. Where have we heard that before?
It’s safe to say 2022 was quite the year for Lisandro Martinez. A league title triumph with Ajax, a massive move to Manchester United, a great start to life at Old Trafford all topped off with the world’s juiciest cherry in winning the grandest prize of them all.
The World Cup winner is yet to see much football since the remarkable final triumph over France – in fairness, some of us might never have recovered from the hangover he surely suffered – and only made his return in the final two minutes of this week’s victory over Bournemouth but fans were giddy for his return.
Read on here.