A dream for Mainoo: Man Utd want to make £60m star their marquee transfer

    Manchester United’s frustrating managerial situation has continued into the third week since their famous FA Cup final victory over Manchester City. Despite the Red Devils lifting the famous trophy for the 13th time in their history, it has not guaranteed the future of Erik ten Hag, and he could still be sacked after a poor season.

    United finished eigth in the Premier League and, as they did not qualify for Europe through their finish in the league, had to rely on their FA Cup victory. It was thanks to their Wembley triumph that Ten Hag’s side secured continental qualification for the 2024/25 season.

    The search for a potential replacement for Ten Hag goes on, although one high-profile name was ruled out over the weekend. As per reputable journalist Fabrizio Romano, Thomas Tuchel will not be taking over at Old Trafford and will take an extended break from management instead.

    Frustratingly, the lack of clarity on next season’s manager has led to some slow summer transfer business for United. They have yet to make a signing and seem to be losing ground in some deals, including one to sign Michael Olise from Crystal Palace. However, one transfer where United could have the upper hand is to sign one of Olise’s teammates at the Eagles.

    Man Utd target Premier League midfielder

    The player in question here is Palace and England international midfielder Eberechi Eze. It has been another impressive season for the former QPR man, with a potential transfer on the cards this summer and some big clubs considering lodging a bid.

    Indeed, that is according to a report from Dan King of The Sun. The story suggests that sources believe the Red Devils hope to make Eze a “marquee signing” at Old Trafford this summer, although they would have to sell players to make it happen.


    This is to ensure they can hit the £60m value that the Eagles have placed on the England international. Palace are said to be steadfast in their desire not to lose either Eze or Olise, but at least one could depart the club if the £60m value is matched.

    However, United will not be the only Premier League side looking to sign the 25-year-old during the 2024 summer window. Ange Postecoglou’s Tottenham Hotspur are rumoured to be interested in bringing him to North London and could lead the race to sign the midfielder. With that being said, Postecoglou “might be reluctant” to spend so much on Eze, and prefers to strengthen elsewhere in the squad first.

    Why Eze would be a good signing

    There is no doubt that Eze was one of the best creative midfielders in the Premier League last season. He scored 11 goals and registered four assists in just 27 top-flight games, as well as notching up two Carabao Cup assists. It was the most productive campaign of his career so far, having played far fewer games.

    Eze’s Premier League career by season





















    Stats from Transfermarkt

    If Eze joined United over the summer, he could ignite a wonderful partnership with England teammate Kobbie Mainoo. The 19-year-old has become a key player at Old Trafford and is virtually undroppable for the Red Devils now.

    Should both midfielders operate in the centre of the park for United next season, it could see Mainoo sit deeper and allow Eze to foray forward and contribute to attacks, alongside Bruno Fernandes.


    Eze is a wonderful ball carrier, able to slalom easily between defenders. This is shown by his Fbref stats, where he averages 6.13 take-ons per 90 minutes, completing 3.02 of those per 90. This ranks him in the top 10% and 9% of attacking midfielders in Europe respectively. However, he will also help out defensively, with his 5.91 ball recoveries per 90 placing him among the best 5%.

    Mainoo is also an impressive ball-carrier, but should he be given the responsibility of sitting deeper, his line-breaking passes could really come to fruition. As per Fbref, the teen averages 0.37 through balls per 90, which places him in the top 12%. However, his out-of-possession work is also good enough to allow him to play deeper. Mainoo averages 3.25 tackles and interceptions per 90 and makes 4.53 ball recoveries on average per 90.

    Having Mainoo sit deeper, and Eze get forward and look to contribute in the final third could provide a great balance for United in midfield. Whilst it could retract from Mainoo’s obvious attacking quality, it could allow the Palace sensation to explode, as the youngster focuses on those impressive line-breaking passes to help start attacks.

    The 25-year-old is clearly well thought of in the media, too. Former Palace manager Alan Smith explained that Eze is “just different”, before pointing out that “he’s exciting” when in full flow. This high praise came after England’s 3-0 win over Bosnia and Herzegovina last Monday, where Smith also claimed Eze has an “Ian Wright-expectation level” on his shoulders.


    Should United manage to bring Eze to Old Trafford this summer, it would represent an impressive piece of business to kick-start what has been a slow summer so far. Despite a lack of clarity over Ten Hag’s future, United fans would be delighted to bring a player of Eze’s quality to the club.


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