Mauricio Pochettino looks two steps closer to becoming the next manager of Man Utd after promising updates from multiple sources.
Ralf Rangnick succeeded Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in November after the Red Devils endured a dismal run of results. The experienced German was tasked with guiding Man Utd through the remainder of the season before moving upstairs into a consultancy role.
However, speculation has swirled that Rangnick wishes to be installed as the club’s next permanent manager. It’s a scenario that has its merits given the squad will be accustomed to his training methods. Additionally, few will know better than Rangnick how United should attack the summer transfer window.
Nevertheless, the common consensus is Rangnick will not be lead the club beyond this season. What’s more, trusted journalist Fabrizio Romano has hinted at United’s plans when providing a late transfer update.
Romano tweeted the Red Devils were offered the chance to sign all three of Denis Zakaria, Boubakar Kamara and Julian Alvarez in January. However, the club’s hierarchy rejected the deals because of their ‘new manager plans’.
In other words, the decision-makers did not want to splash the cash on players that might not be to the liking of their next manager.
Furthermore, Romano confirmed options to buy were not included in the loan deals for Donny Van de Beek and Anthony Martial. Similarly, that is to give the next permanent manager the final say on what happens with that pair.
Zidane to push Pochettino to Man Utd?
With Rangnick seemingly destined to leave his managerial post, the focus will soon turn to who will take the reins.
The likes of Zinedine Zidane, Erik Ten Hag and Mauricio Pochettino were all touted at the time of Solskjaer’s sacking. And according to French outlet Foot Mercato (via the Daily Express), the pieces are falling into place for Pochettino.
That’s because PSG – where Pochettino currently manages – have their gaze firmly fixed on Zidane.
In fact, the outlet state they are prepared to offer the French legend a salary even greater than the €12m-a-year he was on at Real Madrid. For reference, Pochettino is reportedly earning €8m-per-year at present.
Zidane has been out of work since leaving Real for a second time in May last year. He had been rumoured to be a contender to succeed Didier Deschamps as French national coach.
However, that role would not be available until the end of 2022 after the winter World Cup in Qatar. What’s more, Deschamps may be handed a new contract anyway.
PSG are reportedly seeking a sprinkling of stardust with Pochettino underwhelming thus far in Paris. His reputation in England is well established, however, and few United fans would bemoan his appointment in the summer.
Club chiefs jet in to advance Man Utd transfer
Meanwhile, Manchester United midfielder Andreas Pereira is the focus of transfer talks after Flamengo chiefs flew into England to ‘advance’ their first bid, as per reports.
Pereira, 26, is currently on loan in his native Brazil at Flamengo. However, Flamengo are hopeful the midfielder’s stay back home will extend further than that. That’s after recently submitting an €8m bid to the Red Devils.
Having not yet heard anything back on that offer, officials Bruno Spindel and Marcos Braz have travelled to hold a face-to-face meeting. That’s according to Globo Esporte, who claim Pereira is one of their transfer priorities.
As such, they want to ‘strengthen ties with the British’ and ‘advance with the purchase’. They may have some work to do, though, because there is already a €20m buy option in his loan deal.
There’s clearly disagreement between the two clubs on how much Pereira is worth. But United may have to take what they can get.
Pereira’s United contract expires in the summer of 2023. As such, the Old Trafford hierarchy may have to cash in this summer or risk losing him for free in 2023.