Manchester United, FC Barcelona fight for 2022 FIFA World Cup midfield star’s signature in transfer saga
Manchester United and FC Barcelona are fighting for the signature of a Serie A midfielder, who shone in the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Having lost the FA Cup final against Manchester City, Manchester United are set to reinforce their midfield department. The Red Devils crashed to a 2-1 defeat vs City at the Wembley Stadium, courtesy of a brace by Ilkay Gundogan. The City captain's first goal in the opening minute was a spectacular volley from out of the box, contributed by lazy defensive work by United's midfield.
The Premier League side have reportedly made contact with Fiorentina for the transfer of Sofyan Amrabat, who shone for Morocco in the 2022 FIFA World Cup. But now according to reports, FC Barcelona have also entered the race for the midfielder's signature. The La Liga side even tried to acquire the midfielder during the previous transfer window and see him as a replacement for Sergio Busquets.
Also, Amrabat will be a cheaper option to other midfield targets like Ruben Neves and Joshua Kimmich. Also, his contract with Fiorentina expires in 2024. Barcelona made a loan-plus-option proposal in January which was rejected by the Serie A outfit.
Erik ten Hag has already managed Amrabat previously and this could turn the tide towards United's favour. The former Ajax gaffer was in charge of Utrecht when Amrabat came through their academy.
The midfielder has also praised Ten Hag in the past. Speaking to The Athletic, he said, "That was so important for me. It was my second year in the first team. He made a plan for me. He asked me about my strong points and what I wanted to improve."
"From the first day, he was busy with me. Not only me, all the players. A lot of coaches are busy in general with the team but he put a lot of time into individual work because he knew if the individual was better the team would be better. After every game, he would take me through a video and explain everything to me. I was 18 or 19 years old, so sometimes I was thinking, “Oof, again?” but now, when I look back, I know it was so important for my career. I learned such a lot from him", he further added.