Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has reportedly told his club to win the race for the transfer of Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt.
The teenage centre-back is widely regarded as one of the finest young players in Europe at the moment, with a host of other big names also being linked with him in recent times.
The latest from Don Balon is that United now look to be moving to beat Barcelona to De Ligt’s signature on the instruction of manager Mourinho, though Liverpool and Juventus are also mentioned as admirers of the Netherlands international.
United clearly need a top class signing in defence as soon as possible, with players like Eric Bailly and Chris Smalling looking far from convincing this season.
De Ligt seems an ideal long-term solution for the Red Devils, and Don Balon claim the club are now ready to pay as much as £71.2million to beat other big names to this signing.
It remains to be seen which club De Ligt himself would favour moving to next, though he could be well advised to steer clear of a move to Old Trafford at this moment in time.
With the team struggling under Jose Mourinho, there is no guarantee they’ll be playing Champions League football next season or challenging for major honours any time soon.
The same cannot realistically be said of Barcelona, Liverpool or Juventus, but Don Balon’s report suggests other clubs will have to get their acts together now United have entered the running.