Manchester United closely monitoring Bayern Munich defender Matthijs de Ligt

Manchester United have revived their interest in Bayern Munich defender Matthijs de Ligt before the summer transfer window.

Matthijs de Ligt

The Netherlands international, 24, has endured a tough time at Bayern Munich since moving from Juventus in the summer of 2022. Under former Bayern Munich boss Thomas Tuchel, he often failed to start ahead of Dayot Upamecano, Kim Min-jae, and even Eric Dier, and his inconsistent game time combined with injury problems limited the 24-year-old to only 22 Bundesliga appearances this past season.

It appears Matthijs de Ligt is not considered a crucial part of new manager Vincent Kompany’s plans either, with the Bavarians finalising a deal for Japanese Hiroki Ito from Stuttgart and continuing their pursuit of 2023/24 Bundesliga-winning Bayer Leverkusen star Jonathan Tah. As a result, De Ligt is allowed to leave Allianz Arena if a suitable offer arrives this summer.

Manchester United are reportedly keeping tabs on the Dutch defender’s situation at Bayern, with Erik ten Hag still a big fan of his former protégé. De Ligt, who still has three years left on his current contract at Bayern, is focused on the upcoming European Championships with the Netherlands in Germany.

Manchester United eyeing a top-quality centre-back

Erik ten Hag has managed to keep his job despite his team’s poor show last season. They slumped to their worst-ever finish in the Premier League but the Dutch tactician avoided the chop after a shock FA Cup final win over cross-town rivals Manchester City at Wembley Stadium in May.

The 56-year-old manager pointed to the defence as a major problem for his side’s disappointing Premier League campaign. Owing to recurrent injury problems, he was rarely able to pick his strongest back four.

The grave injury situation last season sometimes forced Casemiro to operate as a centre-back. Raphael Varane has announced his departure as a free agent, while Jonny Evans at 36 is well past his prime. Meanwhile, Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof are entering the final year of their contracts, making a central defender an absolute must this summer.

Matthijs de Ligt would be a transformative signing for the Red Devils

Matthijs de Ligt found game time tough to come by last season and, ss Bayern edges closer to signing Bayer Leverkusen’s Jonathan Tah, he is expected to fall further down the defensive pecking order. The Netherlands international’s uncertain future at Bayern could play into the hands of Man United and, considering how Ten Hag got the best out of the defender in his former club Ajax, De Ligt’s acquisition could increase the Premier League club’s depth and raise their overall quality.

De Ligt is a vocal leader, strong in the air, robust in the challenge, composed on the ball and hugely experienced, despite only being 24. Ten Hag knows the player very well having managed him at Ajax for two seasons and, if he can help him get back to playing at those levels again, the Leiderdorp-born star would turn out to be a transformative signing for the Red Devils.

Man United should be all over the ex-Juventus man to ensure he is plying his trade at Old Trafford under Ten Hag next season. De Ligt would be a strong replacement for Varane and an ideal player to partner fan favourite Lisandro Martinez at the back.

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