Everton’s Jarrad Branthwaite is on Manchester United’s radar this summer as they attempt to settle on defensive options with Erik ten Hag set to arrive at Old Trafford
Manchester United are weighing up a move to Everton ‘s Jarrad Branthwaite with defensive reinforcements on their radar.
The Toffees’ teenager has rarely featured this term, playing just five times and scoring once for a struggling side. Branthwaite moved to Merseyside from Carlisle United for £1m and was handed his debut by Carlo Ancelotti, who rated him highly.
The 19-year-old is well over six foot and possess strong technical skills, which are increasingly crucial in the modern game. United have shortlisted two internationals as they seek to add to their backline, but they are also keen on recruiting players whom they can develop, reports the Daily Mail.
Branthwaite would fall into that category, although Everton would be reluctant to lose the teenager. They know that they need to reshape their squad with top flight status still anything but guaranteed such has been their struggles. The Merseysiders have huge debts that they also need to address.
Erik ten Hag is due to arrive this summer with club chiefs negotiating his exit from Ajax. Suring up a defence that has shipping goals regularly this term will be crucial. In their opening 14 games of the season they kept just two clean sheets whilst they shipped four or more against the likes of Leicester City and Liverpool.
United currently have a host of centre-halves on their books – another issue that will need to be address. Interim boss Ralf Rangnick has been able to pick from the likes of Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, Raphael Varane, Eric Bailly and Phil Jones this term. Youngsters Axel Tuanzebe and Teden Mengi are also out on loan.
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Some of those players will be considering their futures this summer with minutes increasingly hard to come by. United also need to be ruthless and decide who they want to put their faith in going forward, especially with more players on their radar.
United have conceded 44 times in 32 games so far this term, with David de Gea arguably their most impressive performer this term. It underlined the task that is set to face Ten Hag as he attempts to overhaul the current squad at Old Trafford.
Players like Edinson Cavani and Jesse Lingard will be leaving this summer when their current contracts expire. Other individuals have grown frustrated at their lack of involvement and may seek exits, with goalkeeper Dean Henderson among them. Donny van de Beek may yet be handed a lifeline having worked impressively under Ten Hag during his Ajax days.