Manchester United have suffered a potentially significant blow in their pursuit of Bayern Munich midfielder Leon Goretzka.
The 26-year-old has entered the final year of his current contract at the Allianz Arena and has been heavily linked with a move to United as a result.
However, new Munich manager Julian Nagelsmann has recently expressed his confidence over Goretzka agreeing to terms on a new deal, dashing the Red Devils’ hopes of signing the box-to-box dynamo.
“I’m not involved enough that I have a say every day. I stay out of these issues,” said Nagelsmann (as reported by the Manchester Evening News).
“Of course, I have talked to him about my plans for him. I’ve told him I’d be happy if he extended, and I’m also confident. There are several topics involved when it comes to discussing a contract extension.
“I’ll continue to focus on the sports side of things and show him he can be one of the most dangerous midfielders in Europe. He has potential to get even better.”
With Paul Pogba’s future at United far from secure, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is believed to be in the market for a new central midfielder this summer.
Therefore, news that Nagelsmann is confident that Goreztka will commit his future to Bayern, and turn down the Old Trafford outfit’s advances, will surely leave the Norwegian tactician feeling gutted.
His powerful and energetic performances have caught the eye of several onlookers since his arrival in Bavaria three years ago, including his new boss Nagelsmann, who said: “Leon is one of the best box-to-box players in Europe. He has incredible goal threat and knows when to bomb forward.”
Goretzka would have been a perfect, ready-made replacement for the potentially departing Pogba or he could have added more stability and strength in depth to United’s engine room if the France international decided to stay.
However, the chances of Goretzka joining the 20-time English champions either this summer or next now appear to be slim, something which will come as a blow to Solskjaer’s ambitions.
And, in other news…Time’s up: Ole must axe £9m-rated MUFC dud this summer, he’s not good enough