‘Quality players want to come’

Erik ten Hag has insisted that the quality of player that Manchester United can sign has increased over the past year.

The Red Devils have largely enjoyed a successful first year under the Dutchman, notably ending their six-year wait for a trophy by winning the Carabao Cup.

Though qualification back to the Champions League looked safe a month ago, a poor run of results means that United could yet be dragged back into a battle for a top-four spot.

Nevertheless, Ten Hag is adamant that the club’s summer transfer business will not hinge on which European competition they are in next season and claimed that they can now sign better players than before.

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“I see a big difference in comparison with last year,” he said at a press conference on Friday. “There were a lot of reservations last year when I spoke with players and now many players see the project, what’s going on, the dynamic and the ambition in this project, the quality especially.

“They are really keen to come, I’ve noticed that. It looks like there were a lot of reservations last year, a lot of doubts when we approached players. This year, many quality players really want to come.”

Man Utd made five key additions to their squad during Ten Hag’s first transfer window, bring in Lisandro Martinez, Christian Eriksen, Casemiro, Tyrell Malacia and Antony.

They then added Wout Weghorst, Jack Butland and Marcel Sabitzer on loan in January.

Man Utd are gearing up for a busy summer in the transfer market.

While David de Gea is closing in on a new contract, 90min understands they have been keeping watchful eyes over Porto’s Diogo Costa and Brentford’s David Raya this season, while young goalkeeper Matej Kovar could challenge him for the starting spot too.

The Red Devils have also kept tabs on Milan defender Fikayo Tomori, as well as Monaco’s Axel Disasi.

Further up the pitch, Man Utd have considered bolstering their midfield options, with Bayern Munich’s Ryan Gravenberch and Chelsea’s Mateo Kovacic among their targets.

Signing a new striker is among Man Utd’s top priorities, with Tottenham’s Harry Kane and Juventus’ Dusan Vlahovic among a raft players on their shortlist.


On this edition of Talking Transfers, part of the 90min podcast network, Scott SaundersGraeme Bailey & Toby Cudworth discuss the possibility of Neymar joining Newcastle, Jude Bellingham’s decision on his future and Lionel Messi leaving PSG.

If you can’t see this embed, click here to listen to the podcast!