While all attention is on Jack Grealish and James Maddison, Manchester United have a third attacking midfield target who may prove to be the shrewdest buy of them all.
Bayer Leverkusen’s Kai Havertz, a reported target for the Red Devils, has been in sensational form in the Bundesliga this season and could provide the perfect fit for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team rebuild.
The 20-year-old was outstanding for the German side against FC Porto at the Dragão yesterday, scoring his second goal of the tie and providing two assists to send the Portuguese outfit crashing out of the Europa League.
The youngster has also recorded five goals and three assists in 20 games in the Bundesliga this season – not as prolific as his 17 goals in 34 games last season, but still an impressive haul for a 20 year old.
Leicester’s Maddison has been the Red Devils’ top midfield target for some time, but that door looks to be closing completely. The Telegraph reports that the Englishman is on the point of signing a new contract with Leicester, and Foxes’ manager Brendan Rodgers is adamant that his player will stay at the club. ‘The boy is very happy, he wants to be here and he sees this as the club he can develop at’ the former Liverpool man said recently.
Maddison’s inavailability may prove to be a blessing in disguise for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer if he can fend off the likes of Liverpool and Bayern Munich to bag Havertz’s signature.
Apart from being younger than his English counterpart, the German has the big advantage of being comfortable on the right wing as well as in central midfield, an area in which the Red Devils have been lacking for some time.
Neither player would come cheap, with both expected to cost around £85 million, if available.
Grealish would remain the least expensive option of the three but is more of a left-sided player – an area in which the Red Devils have more cover.
If Paul Pogba moves on in the summer, there may be funds for the Reds to sign both Havertz and Grealish. Unlike Maddison, both are expected to leave their current clubs, with Aston Villa’s Dean Smith clutching at straws when saying ‘[Villa’s owners] will be working very hard to make sure our best players stop at this football club. That’s the best answer I can give about Jack’ and Bayer’s chied Rudi Voller admitting ‘I am glad that we still held on [to Kai] this year … We’ll see how it looks in summer.’
With all the recent publicity about whether some of the current squad is good enough to play for Man United, why not remind yourself of some of the worst flops to ever appear at the Theatre of Dreams by doing our quiz below?