Manchester United have reportedly pinpointed Ajax star Nicolas Tagliafico as a potential target in case they fail in their pursuit of Porto man Alex Telles.
Tagliafico’s former Ajax team-mate, Donny van de Beek, remains the Red Devils’ sole addition with less than two weeks remaining of the summer transfer market but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to bring in further reinforcements at left-back, on the right flank and in central defence.
Though Telles is thought to be the club’s priority target at left-back, the club have been forced to explore alternatives, with the Dragons standing firm over their £23 million valuation of the South American.
The Premier League side even offered up Diogo Dalot in a player-plus-cash deal for Alex but the proposal was swiftly snubbed by Porto.
According to The Sun, they are adamant that their £23 million asking price for Telles is paid in full and the Red Devils have stepped up their interest in Tagliafico as a result.
However, the report states Ajax are demanding an identical fee for Nicolas (£23m) which could prevent a deal from getting off the ground ahead of October’s deadline.
Tagliafico was firmly on Leicester’s transfer radar at the start of the summer but the Foxes instead signed Atalanta’s Timothy Castagne, who has impressed at the start of the 2020/21 PL campaign.
Meantime, Luke Shaw called on United to bring in more new players in the wake of their 3-1 defeat to Crystal Palace.
‘We have a very good group, but personally I think we need more players to strengthen the squad,’ the Englishman told TV2.
‘It can give us a boost. When you look around at how other teams are strengthening their teams, then we must also do it to keep up with the others.’
Manchester United decided against a swoop for Everton forward Dominic Calvert-Lewin after the Toffees asked for £80 million for the 23carve-year-old.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is a big admirer of the forward and felt that his aerial presence could offer the club something completely different to Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford.
However, United were taken aback by the Toffees’ £80m valuation of the striker and cooled their interest in Calvert-Lewin.
The striker was purchased for just £1.5m from Sheffield United four years ago but it was not until the appointment of Carlo Ancelotti that the forward found his feet in the Everton starting XI.
Calvert-Lewin has repaid the Italian tactician’s faith in him with 13 goals in 23 games under Carlo, including a hat-trick in the weekend win versus Slaven Bilic’s West Bromwich Albion.
Manchester United extended forward Odion Ighalo’s stay at the club in July but the Nigerian star’s loan move expires in January, meaning the attacker remains a short-term solution to the club’s striker problems.
The Red Devils decided against a permanent deal for the ex-Watford ace, suggesting that Solskjaer is keen on landing a younger striker to compliment the likes of Mason Greenwood, Martial and Rashford.
The Red Devils missed out on Dortmund talent Erling Haaland in January, which forced them into an emergency move for Odion.
United have scouted Lyon forward Moussa Dembele heavily in the past but the Ligue 1 side want around £50 million for the former Celtic and Fulham striker.
Chris Smalling is reportedly training alone at Manchester United as the board continue to demand a £25 million transfer fee from Serie A side Roma.
The 30-year-old defender spent last season at Roma and the Serie A giants are keen to sign the centre-half on a permanent deal.
However, The Telegraph report that United aren’t willing to accept Roma’s current offer for Chris and are holding out to receive a £25 million offer.
Roma, however, are unwilling to pay such a high sum for a player United were willing to let go last year and is currently not in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s plans.
According to reports in Italy earlier in September, Roma opened discussions with the Red Devils with an offer of £11 million.
Chris trained on his own at Carrington on Tuesday while the rest of the roster travelled down south for their Carabao Cup tie against Luton Town.
Meanwhile, Borussia Dortmund have allegedly been left bemused by Manchester United’s approach for forward Jadon Sancho.
Even though Dortmund’s chief Sebastien Kehl has reaffirmed that Sancho will be going nowhere during the transfer market, United are reportedly still trying to secure the 20-year-old ace’s signature.
Dortmund were said to have set an August 10 deadline for a deal to be sealed, and the Bundesliga outfit are supposedly scratching their heads over the RE Devils’ approach to the situation.
Transfer expert Dharmesh Sheth told Sky Sports News: “As recently as Monday, the Dortmund director Sebastian Kehl said Sancho would be staying at the club.
“He said, ‘it is an important statement because we have a certain responsibility and without Jadon, this team is worse’.
“He went on to say, ‘yes, some day he may well leave for a new challenge, but right now he’s happy at Dortmund and Dortmund are happy to have him’.
“I’m told today that Dortmund and those close to the deal have been ‘bemused’ at how United have approached this deal.”