Manchester United ‘open talks’ to sign 22-year-old for around £60 million: Reports

Manchester United have reportedly ‘opened talks’ with Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt over a potential reunion with Erik ten Hag at Old Trafford.

De Ligt, 22, rose to prominence under Erik ten Hag at Ajax, making 70 appearances under the Dutch tactician and captaining the side to the Eredivisie title in 2019.

Erik ten Hag has since taken over at Manchester United and is reportedly eyeing a move for his former Ajax skipper.

According to Calciomercato (via Manchester Evening News), the Red Devils have pushed forward in a £60 million attempted pursuit of the Juventus star.

💣 Erik ten Hag is trying to “seduce” De Ligt to join Manchester United this summer. His seduction methods have so far been unsuccessful. #MUFC #Juventus

De Ligt has two years left on his contract with Juve, having joined the Old Lady from Ajax back in 2019 for £76.95 million.

The 22-year-old was asked by NOS for thoughts over potentially reuniting with Ten Hag at Manchester United, to which he replied:

“I look at the sporting project. Ending fourth in a row for two years in a row is not good enough, Juventus knows this too. So being Juventus, we have to make steps. I’m a Juventus player so I’m focused on that.”

United ended last season sixth in the Premier League and will play in the UEFA Europa League next campaign.

Erik ten Hag looking to revitalize Manchester United’s stagnant defense

Erik ten Hag seems keen to reunite with Matthijs de Ligt
Erik ten Hag seems keen to reunite with Matthijs de Ligt

Manchester United are eyeing defensive reinforcements under Erik ten Hag which had seen them target De Ligt’s Dutch compatriot Jurrien Timber.

The Ajax centre-back, however, seems to have rejected the opportunity to join his former manager at Old Trafford (per Mirror).

That won’t stop the Dutch tactician looking to mend what was a woeful backline under former interim manager Ralf Rangnick at United last season.

The Red Devils not only finished in lowly sixth place in the league but they recorded the worst points tally in the club’s Premier League history (58).

United also ended the campaign on a goal difference of zero, having conceded a concerning 57 goals, the ninth lowest out of the top ten.

The performances of the likes of Harry Maguire, Raphael Varane, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Alex Telles were heavily scrutinized.

Hence, Ten Hag may be looking to bring in a centre-back he has so much knowledge of in De Ligt.

The Juventus star has made 117 appearances for Massimilliano Allegri’s side and has quickly become one of Europe’s top defenders.

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