Manchester United could well be plotting to strengthen their midfield ranks even further before the deadline, despite having seemingly all but completed a deal for Bayern Munich’s Marcel Sabitzer.
What’s the word?
According to Foot Mercato, the Red Devils are believed to have offered to take Lyon midfielder Houssem Aouar on loan for the remainder of the campaign and pay his full salary, with the 24-year-old having just six months remaining on his existing deal with the Ligue 1 outfit.
A further report from a journalist on Twitter has also corroborated those claims, writing in the last hour and a half: “Manchester United have held early discussions regarding a potential loan deal for Houssem Auoar. Far from being done, and currently seems unlikely.”
With the loss of both Christian Eriksen and Donny van de Beek to injury having left Erik ten Hag rather short on options in the centre of the park, it is seemingly no surprise that the Dutchman is attempting to secure quality recruits with just a matter of hours left in the window.
In the case of Aouar, the exciting Frenchman has endured a frustrating spell of late – having featured just eight times in the league this season due to injury – although he clearly remains a player of huge potential, having previously been described as “incredible” by Manchester City boss, Pep Guardiola.
The 5 foot 9 maestro has illustrated that quality having racked up 41 goals and 35 assists in 224 games for his current side to date, while he has also been lauded as “technically gifted” and “dangerous” by Lyon boss – and one-time United man – Laurent Blanc.
The £63k-per-week sensation notably compares favourably among those in his position, ranking in the top 5% for non-penalty goals as well as in the top 8% for dribbles completed as a marker of his attacking thrust, while also ranking in the top 1% for progressive passes received to illustrate his creative flair.
That dynamism should well help ease the loss of Eriksen – who has nine assists to his name this season – as well as provide quality cover for Bruno Fernandes in Ten Hag’s squad, with the absence of Van de Beek having only enhanced the reliance on the Portuguese international.
In truth, it would certainly be a rather ‘incredible’ signing as far as the Old Trafford outfit are concerned if they can get Aouar through the door, particularly should it come so late in the day.