Manchester United have not been fazed by the recent negative developments at the club, as they are keeping their project of rebuilding the club intact under Erik ten Hag. A string of startling events have been witnessed at Old Trafford this whole week, after the bombshell Cristiano Ronaldo interview.
The 37-year-old’s contract has been terminated with a mutual agreement after he launched a staunching attack on the club, its owners, the manager, and even ex-players.
The unfamous owners of the club, the Glazers family have now put the club on sale after Ronaldo’s tirade reportedly exposed how they have stagnated the club since Sir Alex Ferguson left. However, amidst all the chaos,
Ten hag is trying hard to keep his concentration unscathed as he is using the World Cup break to identify new recruitments in the upcoming transfer windows. Of course, Ronaldo’s replacement will be at the top of the list, but the manager is also eyeing one interesting player, who is also been followed by Spanish giants FC Barcelona.
Martin Zubimendi now on Manchester United’s radars
Real Sociedad’s Martin Zubimendi is now wanted by Manchester United, who is also on the shop list of the Catalan club. The defensive midfielder has impressed many with his astonishing performances this season, and there are no wonder clubs like United and Barcelona are poaching him.
A product of Sociedad’s academy, Zubimendi made his debut back in 2020 after being promoted from the club’s B-team. He has so far amassed 114 appearances for them now and has hit a peak this season.
According to Mundo Deportivo, United manager Erik ten Hag is heavily impressed with the 23-year-old solid displays and has been following him ever since the Basque club inflicted a 1-0 loss over his team at Old Trafford in the Europa League. Zubimendi played the full 90 minutes as he ended the game with a 93% pass accuracy, 6 recoveries, 5 interceptions, 4 long-balls, and 3 duels won.
His brilliant performances haven’t gone unnoticed, as Barcelona were the first ones to register their interest in him. the Catalan outfit’s manager Xavi is keen to bring in the youngster who he feels would be the perfect and long-term replacement for Sergio Busquets.
The 34-year-old is tipped to leave at the end of this season, with offers from MLS already on his table. Xavi does not want the club to experiment with that important position and wants a quick resolution in Zubimendi.
United too, despite signing Casemiro this summer for a whopping £70 million wants a younger version in that position. Zubimendi fits in and has already gained respect from Erik ten Hag, who is eager to have the boy in his dressing room. United’s options in that defensive midfield area, barring Scott McTominay are either in their 30s or fast approaching it.
Even the 25-year-old McTominay is not fancied by Ten Hag and hence could be put on the market. The Dutchman has outlined Zubimendi as the need of the hour for the club if they are building a solid project for the future as well as the present.
However, neither United nor Barca are going to have it easy in this pursuit. The youngster has already made his feeling of continuing at the Basque club, penning a long-term deal last month which now runs until the summer of 2027.
Moreover, it also has a £51.5 million release clause attached to it, which will further inflate to £56 million from the upcoming winter market. Zubimendi too has not expressed any wish of leaving the club anytime soon despite the enticing interest from Barca and now United.
Mundo Deportivo further adds that neither of the interested parties is ready to pay a sum as significant as £56 million for the player, given their reasons. Ten Hag feels United have more important areas to strengthen and Barcelona have already made it clear that they will be exploring the next couple of transfer markets for free agents only.
Sociedad feels there’s no need to panic hearing the likes of Barca and united line up at their doors, as they too are ready to stand firm on demanding the player’s exit clause.