The representatives of free-agent full-back Santiago Arias are not in contact with Manchester United over a transfer, a report claims.
The Red Devils spent big this summer to help manager Erik ten Hag get his Old Trafford project off the ground. Despite holding back funds early on in the transfer window, a poor start to the campaign sprang more signings.
And left-back addition Tyrell Malacia has proved key in helping drive up Man Utd’s performance levels. United also reportedly wanted a new right-back. There were in fact suggestions of a swap deal involving Barcelona’s Sergino Dest and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
Ten Hag ruled out Wan-Bissaka’s exit and United did not go after Dest. However, reports have revealed interest in Colombian right-back Arias from Ten Hag, who still seemingly wants a new right-back.
What’s more, his status as a free agent means he is available for transfer after the window’s closure.
According to journalist Pipe Sierra, though, Arias’ representatives have insisted that they are not in talks with Man Utd.
Sierra adds that lawyers and agents who work with the 30-year-old “don’t believe in this rumour”.
However, the journalist notes that Arias – who last played for Atletico Madrid – can negotiate “on his own”.
Arias played for Sporting and PSV Eindhoven before moving to Atletico in the summer of 2018. However, he struggled to nail down a starting role in Diego Simeone’s team, going on loan to Bayer Leverkusen and Granada before the expiry of his contract.
He has played the most games in his career for PSV, chipping in with 10 goals and 21 assists in 172 matches there.
Santiago Arias a mixed Man Utd option
The fact that Arias is available as a free agent makes him an intriguing transfer proposition.
He would of course not cost a transfer fee, with only his wages to consider for Man Utd. However, certain facets of his career in recent seasons paint an uncertain picture about what impact he would have at Old Trafford.
Arias starred at PSV but struggled to make his mark at Atletico, hence the loan moves away.
And even then, there was no desire from Leverkusen or Granada to bring him to Germany or across La Liga – or for Atletico to play him more.
On the international stage, Arias has not been a key member of the Colombia team since the Copa America in 2019. His steady stream of caps before then has ground to a halt.
As such, there are obvious concerns about why he has not been able to advance his career through his prime years.
United have Diogo Dalot and Wan-Bissaka in their right-back ranks. And while Wan-Bissaka may have lost his place to Dalot, he still has plenty of Premier League experience. And he proved his worth under former United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
For his potential impact, Arias doesn’t look a worthy move given United’s current options.
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