United on verge of £39.3m Van de Beek cap­ture

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Sport - By Ja­son Burt CHIEF FOOT­BALL COR­RE­SPON­DENT

Manch­ester United have agreed to sign Ajax mid­fielder Donny van de Beek for €44mil­lion (£39.3mil­lion).

Talks es­ca­lated quickly over the week­end af­ter the 23-year-old was with­drawn from the Ajax squad who were due to play Ein­tra­cht

Frank­furt in a pre-sea­son friendly on Satur­day.

Ajax coach Erik ten Hag claimed the omis­sion was linked to Van de Beek’s fu­ture and United pressed ahead with a for­mal bid yes­ter­day to try to en­sure other clubs do not come in for the player.

The Daily Tele­graph un­der­stands

that per­sonal terms have al­ready been agreed with the Hol­land in­ter­na­tional, who is ex­pected to have a med­i­cal this week ahead of sign­ing a five-year deal.

United have tracked Van de Beek for some time and, it ap­pears, have been given a “free run” at sign­ing him af­ter Barcelona and Real Madrid did not step up their in­ter­est. Tot­ten­ham have also shown in­ter­est, but did not make a bid.

Coro­n­avirus has cooled Real’s in­ter­est, while the tur­moil and fi­nan­cial con­straints at Barcelona, un­der new head coach Ron­ald Koe­man, have com­pli­cated any move there.

Van de Beek will be­come United’s first sign­ing of this trans­fer win­dow and is ex­pected to form a mid­field tri­umvi­rate with Paul Pogba and Bruno Fer­nan­des.

Al­though Van de Beek, a prod­uct of the Ajax academy, can play as a boxto-box mid­fielder – and scored 10 goals in 37 ap­pear­ances for Ajax last sea­son – it would be ex­pected he would take a deeper role should Pogba stay.

In May, Ajax chief ex­ec­u­tive – and for­mer United goal­keeper – Edwin van der Sar con­firmed that Van de Beek would

Tal­ented: Donny van de Beek was high on Ole Gun­nar Sol­sk­jaer’s wish list be al­lowed to leave the club if a suit­able of­fer was made. United’s in­ter­est in Van de Beek does not mean they will not press ahead with plans to try to sign a right-sided for­ward hav­ing, so far, been frus­trated in their ef­forts to bring in Jadon San­cho from Dort­mund.

The fee for Van de Beek in­cludes add-ons, al­though they are not ex­pected to be dif­fi­cult to reach. It is un­der­stood that United man­ager Ole Gun­nar Sol­sk­jaer has pushed hard for the sign­ing which should be com­pleted in the next few days.

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