Manchester United have been named as the club in pole position to sign Mino Raiola client Blaise Matuidi. And, given how the France international would improve Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side, the Red Devils may be willing to forget their row with Raiola in order to improve their midfield.
These days, Manchester United’s midfield is ticking along nicely.
Fred and Nemanja Matic, coupled with new signing Bruno Fernandes, have helped the club bounce back from the 2-0 defeat to Burnley back in January.
Since then, United have been resurgent.
Tranmere, Manchester City, Chelsea and Watford have all been beaten over 90 minutes, while the club have also got good draws against the likes of Wolves and Club Brugge away from home.
But the brutal fact is that, though Fred and Matic have improved, United require far more when it comes to their midfield.
And, according to Italian outlet Calico Mercato, United are now at the front of the queue for Juventus midfielder Matuidi.
The Serie A giants could offload the France international come the summer, with the former PSG star’s contract expiring in 2021.
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And he’s a player who United could consider ending their row with Matuidi’s agent, Raiola, in order to sign.
Recently, relations between both the club and agent have soured.
Raiola hasn’t stopped talking about Paul Pogba and how, despite the fact United treat him well behind the scenes, they’re not the right club for him.
Earlier this month, the 52-year-old took aim at Ole Gunnar Solskjaer – despite the Norwegian refusing to do the same.
“In all seriousness, I thought what Solskjaer said was out of line,” he said when asked about the 47-year-old.
“He took parts of sentences of an interview of mine, and acted a little bit offended that I was offering Paul Pogba to other clubs without permission.
“If you read the whole interview I was asked if Paul would fancy Italy, and I said Italy is a second home, but that is not the case now as he is concentrated on Manchester United and getting back in the team as soon as possible and to make a great end of the season.”
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United have grown tired of Raiola, however.
It was they who pulled the plug on signing Erling Haaland, believing terms to sign the 19-year-old just weren’t good enough.
Raiola, as the sly dog he is, has installed a clause in Haaland’s contract at Borussia Dortmund that makes him easier to sign from 2021.
And United, fed up of his antics, decided to abandon a deal for the Norway international.
But, now, they’re supposedly at the front of the queue for Matuidi.
And he’s a player the club could decide to put their row with Raiola to one side in order to bring to Old Trafford.
Have there been better holding midfielders over the years?
It’s an area United know they need to address. Matic and Scott McTominay have fared admirably – but Matuidi would be a class above.
The France international is approaching the twilight years of his career – but that doesn’t mean he isn’t worth a punt.
Certainly, Raiola would be unlikely to ask big of United over the France international. At the age of 32, there’s not much point.
And Matuidi has shown over the years that, when it comes to presence in the middle of the park, he’s up to the task.
During the early years of PSG’s Qatari reign, he was a huge influence under Carlo Ancelotti and Laurent Blanc.
And his influence has extended to Juventus, with the 2018 World Cup winner flourishing in Serie A.
United could do a lot worse when it comes to signing Matuidi.
He’s got ability, he’s got experience and he’s got a driven mentality. All three would be welcome to Solskjaer.
So, for United, he could be worth ending their row with Raiola once and for all.
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