Manchester United have taken first step towards Jules Kounde transfer

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Manchester United appear to have taken their first step towards signing Sevilla defender Jules Kounde. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has made the defender his top transfer target for the summer window, despite having the likes of Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly and Axel Tuanzebe on the books at Old Trafford. And they’re hopeful they can secure his signature at the end of the campaign.

United’s defenders have blown hot and cold throughout the course of the campaign so far, despite the club flying high towards the top of the Premier League table.

And The Mirror reported over the weekend that Kounde is now the club’s top transfer target as a result.

Solskjaer was impressed by the centre-back last season, with the defender shining at Sevilla beat United 2-1 in the semi-finals of the Europa League.

He’s told Ed Woodward he wants a deal for Kounde to be struck at the end of the campaign but, currently, that’s easier said than done.

Woodward has told Solskjaer he needs to find a buyer for Phil Jones, Sergio Romero and Marcos Rojo before sanctioning a deal for a new signing.

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But, now, it appears United have taken their first steps towards a deal.

Fabrizio Romano has claimed that Rojo, who has been at the club since joining from Sporting Lisbon back in 2014, is now on the verge of joining Boca Juniors.

“Facundo Pellistri joins Deportivo Alavés on loan from Manchester United, official,” he said on Twitter.

“Next move will be Marcos Rojo to Boca Juniors – #mufc open to let him leave the club.”

Kounde is wanted by Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus as a result of his sensational performances for Sevilla over the last 18 months.

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“He helped the team reach four finals/semi-finals and then he was left on the bench only to lose them all.

“It is time for them to return the opportunity and let him go. RESPECT FOR ONCE!!!!”

Jones was tipped for greatness by United icon Sir Alex Ferguson, who said in 2012 that he could become the club’s captain in the future.

But he has never lived up to those big expectations and, now, a move away from Old Trafford lies in wait.

Meanwhile, in other United transfer news, Solskjaer ruled out a loan exit for Brandon Williams when speaking after his side’s 0-0 draw with Arsenal on Sunday.

“Brandon will stay,” Solskjaer said. “He played [for] the U23’s against Liverpool [on Saturday], he needed the match fitness.

“He has been working really hard. We don’t have any more players that we feel should be going. We need a strong squad.

“It’s a relentless season. We go again on Tuesday.

“It is like the NBA, we are on the road all the time. We need everyone. The group is tight.

“Brandon has been really good lately, working really hard the last few months and he will be ready when the chance comes.”

United have already lost three players this winter.

Facundo Pellistri and Jesse Lingard have both departed on loan.

And Tim Fosu-Mensah was allowed to join Bayer Leverkusen for just £1.5million.

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