Manchester United have suffered a big blow in their pursuit of Bayern Munich midfielder Leon Goretzka.
The Red Devils have been linked with a move for the powerful 26-year-old throughout the summer after he entered the final year of his current contract, and well-known journalist Christian Falk has provided an update on the situation.
He tweeted: “True @ManUtd was interested in Joshua Kimmich. But Kimmich decided to make a new contract with @FCBayern. Same procedure with Leon Goretzka @FCBayern #EnglischeWoche @altobelli13.”
United are believed to be in the market for a new midfielder in the current window, with Paul Pogba’s future at Old Trafford still far from secure.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was believed to be keen to secure Goretzka’s signature in order to boost his engine room options for 2020/21, although that prospect now appears to be increasingly unlikely.
His powerful and energetic performances have caught the eye of several onlookers since his arrival at the Allianz Arena three years ago, including new Bayern boss Julian 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’s domineering displays and impressive trophy haul of three Bundesliga titles, one Champions League crown and two DFB-Pokals have seen his stock rise exponentially in recent years, and it’s little surprise that United’s hierarchy identified him as a possible replacement for Pogba.
Therefore, Solskjaer is likely to be gutted at the latest revelation regarding the German international’s future.
By bringing Goretzka to Old Trafford, the Norwegian tactician would have been signing a readymade heir in the centre of the pitch, and one who has proven himself to be a top-class operator and natural winner at the highest level.
However, if recent reports are to be believed, United will now have to focus their attention on other targets, with Goretzka set for an extended stay in Bavaria.