Manchester United weighing up move for French youngster in the summer

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By Martin Graham | 15th Feb 2022

ESPN have reported that Manchester United are looking at the possibility of a summer move for Red Bull Leipzig’s Christopher Nkunku.

The 24-year-old former Paris Saint-Germain man has been with Die Roten Bullen since 2019 and has been one of Europe’s most exciting talents in that period.

ESPN reports that Manchester United interim coach Ralf Rangnick, who is poised to take a consultancy role for two years at the club after his time in the dugout, is pushing for the signing of the midfielder.

United have also been reported to be prioritising their midfield over every other area of the squad and will go all out to secure the talent needed to improve that area of the squad.

They also expect Paul Pogba to leave the squad in June, following the expiration of his contract at Old Trafford with no hopes of a renewal.

They will, however, be facing a transfer battle with neighbours Manchester City, who are also interested in the player.

Rangnick was key in taking Nkunku to Leipzig in 2019 as he was the club’s director of football at the time. This season, the 24-year-old has scored 19 goals and provided 13 assists in 31 appearances for Leipzig this season and is attracting attention from all across Europe.

Nkunku only a target for United due to Rangnick role

ESPN however reports that the Frenchman only became a target for United due to Rangnick’s role at the club. Although still serving as interim manager, he has already begun to consult for the club to identify key areas in their squad to fix.

Rangnick reviewed the club’s list of potential signings immediately he got to Old Trafford in December and asked United’s scouts to focus on Nkunku, who can play on both flanks and through the middle as an attacking midfielder.

Nkunku is under contract at the Red Bull Arena until June 2024 and the club’s global head of football, Oliver Mintzlaff, said at the weekend that they will do everything to keep him until his contract expires.

“He [Nkunku] will also play with us next season because of course he is a very important player,” Mintzlaff told Sky Germany. “In football nothing is ever certain, but that’s our plan.

“We don’t have many players who can leave us in the summer. We want to strengthen the team rather than weaken it.”

Martin Graham is an MFF sports writer

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