Manchester United need to strengthen several positions during the upcoming transfer window. Pending any potential departures, The Red Devils should be looking for depth upfront, a right winger and a centre-back. However, soon they might add a central midfielder to the list.
First, Paul Pogba might leave for Real Madrid. To make things even more complicated, Ander Herrera could join PSG as a free agent. With those two rumours looming over Old Trafford, there’s a big chance United end up looking for midfield reinforcements as well. And if that’s the case, there’s one name that should be at the top of their shortlist. We’re talking about Youri Tielemans.
Tielemans has always been tipped for success
The Belgian midfielder has been considered as a top prospect ever since he came through the Anderlecht youth ranks, but he’s taken a huge jump on his development over the past two years. He was a regular on the Belgium squad that finished third in the 2018 FIFA World Cup, thrived at Monaco – where he even captained the side at one point – and now he’s plying his trade at Leicester, where he’s on loan from the Ligue 1 giants.
There were doubts of whether Tielemans would adjust to the physicality and intensity of the Premier League. However, that shouldn’t even be in the discussion anymore. A box-to-box midfielder capable of making an impact on both sides of the pitch, Tielemans’ above-average vision and intelligence gives him an edge over most deep-lying playmakers in England’s top-flight.
Another area that should interest United is his positional versatility. The 21-year-old started his career as a defensive midfielder, but operated as a playmaker in Monaco. He switched back to a CM role with The Foxes during the past few months. However, he continues to operate on a more attacking-minded role. His ability to contribute on both sides of the ball should entice any side looking for midfield depth.
How much would Tielemans cost?
As if all those traits weren’t enough, the Belgian international could join for a relatively cheap transfer fee. Leicester own a €40 million option to sign him on a permanent basis and they have the priority. But it’s unclear whether they would have enough funds to complete the transfer. The Red Devils would certainly be open to spend that kind of money on a player with Tielemans’ ability and potential. In fact, recent rumours put them as front-runners to land him in case he becomes available.
That’s a big if. But Manchester United should definitely try and approach Monaco to land Tielemans. He would be an instant upgrade over the in-house alternatives, and would give the side quite a boost to strengthen other areas of the pitch.