Man Utd thinking outside the box as they ‘eye move’ to bring another Casemiro to the club | Football | Sport
Home » Matches » Man Utd thinking outside the box as they ‘eye move’ to bring another Casemiro to the club | Football | Sport
Man Utd thinking outside the box as they ‘eye move’ to bring another Casemiro to the club | Football | Sport

Manchester United are exploring a left-field summer move for Fulham ace Joao Palhinha as they look to strengthen in midfield by adding another Casemiro-like figure to their squad, according to reports. The Red Devils are widely expected to be in the market for a new central midfielder when the bidding opens at the end of the season as Erik ten Hag aims to prepare for a renewed Premier League title challenge at the next time of asking.

United have been linked with several high-profile targets over the last few weeks, including the likes of Jude Bellingham, Frenkie de Jong and Moises Caicedo, although it seems as though they might be prepared to let their Premier League rivals fight amongst themselves for the very biggest names without getting too involved. Ten Hag appears to be thinking outside the box by chasing a move for Palhinha, although the Fulham ace could still end up costing United a pretty penny should they decide to mount an approach for his signature.

That's according to The Sun, who are reporting that United are keen on Palhinha but could be forced to pay upwards of £40million to bring him to Old Trafford when the season draws to a close. Fulham boss Marco Silva is reportedly determined to keep the Portuguese maestro at Craven Cottage but the club's resolve could be tested if a significant profit can be made on the £17m fee they paid to sign him from Sporting just under a year ago.

Palhinha's price tag also reflects the fact that he still has another four years left to run on his current deal, while Fulham retain the option to extend his stay by an additional season to bring his contract through until the summer of 2028. The 27-year-old has completed more tackles than any other midfielder in Europe's top five leagues this season and has emerged as a hugely important cog in the machine for Fulham, who have left many surprised by fighting for a top-six finish in the Premier League after their promotion last time around.

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United, Newcastle, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham have all been credited with a desire to land Palhinha, although the Red Devils could be poised to find themselves in pole position to snap him up when the transfer window re-opens later this year. Many of the aforementioned clubs have transfer policies that revolve around signing younger Players with sky-high potential, which suggests that Palhinha may not be the first choice for several of United's rivals in the battle to secure his services.

It remains to be seen whether or not Palhinha will become a United player before the start of next season, although former Chelsea defender Jason Cundy has already insisted that he will not be surprised if the ex-Sporting man leaves Fulham in search of bigger and better things at the end of the current campaign.

"I cannot see him being there next year," Cundy told talkSPORT earlier this month. "You know when someone says they don’t mean to offend, and then they immediately do! I think a lot of big heads will be looking at him. He is reaching his potential, and he’s a very, very good player.

"If Fulham get offered £50m for him, they’re going to take that. He is, at the peak of his powers, as good as anyone. The only problem is he picks up a lot of bookings.He needs to somehow temper that, but everything else about his game; closing down, winning challenges, scoring goals."

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