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Manchester United facing Depay repeat with Cody Gakpo swoop

There has been an update in Manchester United‘s reported pursuit of PSV Eindhoven winger Cody Gakpo…

What’s the word?

According to journalist Fabrizio Romano, the 23-year-old is willing to make the move to Old Trafford should the Red Devils firm up their interest in the next week or so, albeit with the current ‘focus’ believed to be that of Ajax starlet Antony.

Writing on Twitter about the Netherlands international, the transfer guru stated: “Cody Gakpo would be prepared to accept Manchester United in case they will submit an official proposal to PSV Eindhoven in the next days. Gakpo and his agents are waiting, up to the club – focus on Antony.”

While there has been a suggestion that Erik ten Hag’s side could attempt to land both of the Eredivisie talents, the more likely scenario would see the Premier League giants turn to Gakpo as an alternative to Antony should the deal for the Brazilian not progress.

Shades of Depay

The PSV man – who could reportedly cost in the region of 50m (£42m) – has caught the eye following his impressive form of late in Netherlands, having notably scored 45 goals and provided 37 assists in all 141 games in all competitions for his current club.

That haul includes a tally of 21 goals and 15 assists from the 2021/22 campaign – with only Cristiano Ronaldo having netted more goals among the United squad last term – while the 6 foot 2 ace has also begun the new season in fine fashion, with seven goal contributions in just six games for Ruud van Nistelrooy’s side.

Such impactful displays have clearly piqued the interest of those at the Theatre of Dreams, with Ten Hag and co seemingly in the market for a new forward addition, particularly amid the uncertainty surrounding that man Ronaldo.

Should United sign Gakpo?

Yes

Yes

No

No

For all the potential excitement over that deal, however, there may be those who can see history repeating itself, having previously seen an explosive Dutch talent arrive in Manchester from Eindhoven, only to go on to distinctly underwhelm.

That elusive figure, of course, was Memphis Depay, with the current Barcelona outcast having arrived to huge fanfare upon his arrival in England back in 2015, having been snapped up by compatriot and former national team boss Louis Van Gaal in a £31m deal.

A left winger by trade – much like Gakpo – Depay was tipped for big things after agreeing to link up with Van Gaal at United, with club legend Dennis Irwin even likening him to David Beckham due to his free-kick prowess.

As it proved, however, the club only ever saw glimpses of his undoubted quality – most notably on the night that Marcus Rashford emerged against FC Midtjylland in February 2016 – as he eventually lasted just 18 months before being shipped off to Lyon.

While the change in manager at the end of Depay’s debut season may not have helped his cause, the mercurial talent seemingly struggled to make the transition to life in the Premier League, scoring just two league goals and failing to register an assist in 33 top-flight outings.

His form since then – which saw him score 76 goals and provide 56 assists during his time in France – has shown that the 28-year-old remains a real talent, although he simply wilted in the intense pressure-cooker that is Old Trafford.

The fear will be that Gakpo could well suffer a similar fate if he were to make the move before deadline day, with it also somewhat of a concern that he is clearly not even Ten Hag’s first choice pick given the reported prioritising of Antony.

Article title: Manchester United facing Depay repeat with Cody Gakpo swoop

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