A swap deal involving Martial and Dembele would be pointless for Manchester United

Spanish sports magazine Don Balon has reported that Jose Mourinho has offered Barcelona a sensational swap deal involving young French wingers Anthony Martial and Ousmane Dembele.

What’s the story?

Martial made an instant impact at United as he scored against Liverpool on his debut after making a £36m move from Monaco in 2015. Since then though, and after Mourinho was made United manager, Martial has struggled to break into the starting line up and has been limited to mainly substitute appearances.

Dembele, 21, has also struggled in his first season at Barcelona after the Catalan club shelled out nearly £100m to sign him from Borussia Dortmund last summer. Despite this, it is clear that both the pacy wingers are extremely talented and have bright futures ahead of them.

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Martial is valued at £57m by Transfermarkt, perhaps because he is a year and a half older than Dembele, who is rated at £72m by the same site.

For Barcelona to consider a potential swap though, Don Balon say that United must offer Martial plus either €25m extra or Ander Herrera for Dembele.

A backwards step

Jose Mourinho pats Anthony Martial on the head

From a United point of view, any deal of this sort would not make sense. Martial must be wondering what he has to do when he plays in his favoured left-wing position that would convince Mourinho to start him.

During his three seasons at Old Trafford, the 22-year-old has scored 24 goals and provided 15 assists in 86 appearances, with much of those coming as a substitute. He has the ability to beat a defender and get fans off their seats which is something that United desperately need at the moment. If he improves his decision making he could become one of Europe’s top wingers.

Dembele too has the potential to be one of the best wingers in the world, but is slightly less developed as a player than Martial. Last season he managed just three goals in 17 league appearances as Barcelona dominated La Liga.

If extra money is involved or it means United lose Herrera then this deal would be a backwards step for the English club, and a catastrophic mistake.