Man Utd ‘plan on signing second forward after Antony’ as two transfer targets revealed | Football | Sport

Manchester United plan on signing a second forward even if they’re able to land Antony from Ajax, according to reports. Erik ten Hag is keen to reunite with the Brazil international, having previously managed him over in Amsterdam. Yet the Red Devils could still land Cody Gako and Christian Pulisic, too, despite the complexities involved.

Manchester United have endured a nightmare start to the new Premier League season, with the Red Devils outplayed and outran by Brighton and Brentford.

And they’re now working hard to bring in more fresh faces, having agreed a deal for Casemiro in addition to recruiting Tyrell Malacia, Lisandro Martinez and Christian Eriksen.

United have already seen one huge bid for Antony turned down, but remain undeterred. The forward himself is keen to join, and has publicly refused to play down the prospect of him leaving Ajax before the transfer window slams shut on September 1.

Now, according to 90min, United plan on signing a second forward if they’re able to successfully bring the 22-year-old to Old Trafford.

The Red Devils know they need more firepower, particularly after the departure of Edinson Cavani and with Mason Greenwood still unavailable for selection.

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And Gakpo and Pulisic are both on their radar.

Gakpo is viewed as one of Dutch football’s brightest prospects for the future, having scored 12 goals and registered 12 assists in the Eredivisie last term.

United, it’s been claimed elsewhere, are ready to launch a £34million bid for the 23-year-old in the hope it’ll be accepted.

The Red Devils last raided PSV Eindhoven back in the summer transfer window of 2015, when they snapped up Memphis Depay and beat Liverpool and Paris Saint-Germain to the signature of the 28-year-old.

And United may go all out for Gakpo in order to avoid losing out on the forward to either a domestic or European rival.

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Pulisic is also admired by the Red Devils, having been linked with a move when the likes of Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho ruled the Old Trafford roost.

His long-term future at Chelsea is unclear, having struggled for regular game time at Stamford Bridge over the past year.

And history suggests a deal can’t be ruled out, with United taking two players off the Blues’ books over the past decade.

Juan Mata left Chelsea for United back in the January transfer window of 2014, with David Moyes bringing in the playmaker in a desperate attempt to keep his job.

United then poached Nemanja Matic from the Blues in 2017, with Mourinho landing the Serbia international after missing out on Tottenham’s Eric Dier.

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Antony, meanwhile, has opened up on Ten Hag and United’s dismal start to the season under the 52-year-old.

And he’s backed his old manager to get his players fully firing, telling De Telegraaf: “Erik has been super important to me.

“I am grateful to him and wish him all the best. I will always cheer for Erik after working so closely together.

“I have not been able to celebrate or cheer for him as he got no points yet. I couldn’t until now anyway and that makes me sad.

“But knowing Erik, I am convinced that he will turn the tide soon. Manchester United will improve at his hand.

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“At his previous clubs he has proven that his method works.”

When quizzed on whether he can commit his future to Ajax, he added: “No. To be honest, I can’t. I can say that I want to make the right decision together with my family, agents and Ajax.”

Paul Merson, meanwhile, feels Antony is no upgrade on United’s current set of forwards.

“They talk about Antony but he’s no better than Marcus Rashford or Jadon Sancho, although he hasn’t really done anything since signing,” he said.

“You’d be buying someone again who has been playing against bang-average full-backs.”

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