Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer favours a move for Aston Villa ace Jack Grealish over Leicester City star James Maddison for two reasons.
The pair have both been on United’s wishlist for the last 12 months as Solskjaer looks to add more creativity to his midfield.
United have missed Paul Pogba’s passing range during the Frenchman’s absence this season but Bruno Fernandes’ arrival has helped plug the gap in attacking midfield following his bright start to life at Old Trafford.
The Portuguese playmaker has taken the no.10 role that Maddison enjoys at Leicester, meaning there’s not a direct position for the England star at the Theatre of Dreams.
But ESPN claim there are two main reasons that Solskjaer favours a move for Grealish instead.
Firstly, despite the midfielder’s decision to flout lockdown rules last month, Solskjaer has been impressed with Grealish’s maturity and readiness to take a leadership role at Villa Park.
The Norwegian has repeatedly stated a desire to find ‘arrogant but humble’ players and he feels Grealish is the right type of player given his balance between ability and work-rate.
Secondly, there is a sense at Old Trafford that Leicester’s asking price for Maddison will make a move for the playmaker unrealistic this summer.
The Foxes are believed to value Maddison at around £80m – the same amount that United paid for Harry Maguire last summer when the club were unhappy at the length of negotiations for the defender.
It’s therefore felt that Grealish is more attainable and that Villa are ready to sell their captain whether or not they manage to survive in the Premier League.
Villa valued Grealish at around £60m and that figure could be reduced further if the club are relegated or in more dire need for a cash injection due to the financial implications of the coronavirus crisis.
United are also keen on signing Jadon Sancho, with Dortmund valuing the winger at £120m.
Despite the financial upheaval, United feel well placed to endure the implications of the outbreak and Solskjaer said earlier this month the club could ‘exploit’ the situation, though Gary Neville later admitted he should not have used the word when asking the Norwegian about the situation.
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