Manchester United bid for Kieran Trippier hinges on sale of Paul Pogba or Jesse Lingard

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 Kieran Trippier of Atletico Madrid during the La Liga Santander match between Atletico Madrid v Espanyol - David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images
Kieran Trippier of Atletico Madrid during the La Liga Santander match between Atletico Madrid v Espanyol - David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s hopes of making further additions to his squad are likely to hinge around the futures of Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard with Manchester United targeting an overall net spend of between £75 million and £100 million this summer.

United confirmed on Tuesday night that they had reached an agreement in principle with Real Madrid for France defender Raphael Varane, who will cost up to £42.7m, four days after announcing the £72.9m signing of England winger Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund.

Including the solidarity payments owed to Watford and Manchester City for Sancho, that deal will cost United £76.55m.

It means United have committed to paying almost £120m in the transfer market this summer and that outlay will necessitate the club making at least one notable sale if Solskjaer is to add a midfielder and/or the Atletico Madrid and England right-back Kieran Trippier to his squad before the close of the transfer window on August 31.

Pogba, 28, has yet to offer United any encouragement that he will sign a new deal and is the player most likely to command a substantial fee. Paris Saint-Germain are considering an approach for the France midfielder, who has entered the final 12 months of his contract and could fetch up to €50m (about £43m).

Another 28-year-old, Lingard, is also in the last year of his contract and West Ham would like to sign the England forward after he impressed on loan at the London Stadium during the second half of last season. He is valued at up to £30m. Various clubs domestically and overseas are monitoring his situation.

Eric Bailly is expected to seek some clarification over his future following Varane’s arrival amid concerns about being relegated to fourth choice in the centre half pecking order behind the Frenchman, captain Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof.

Injuries and a lack of opportunities have limited Bailly’s playing time since his £30m move from Villarreal in 2016 and he was considering his options before eventually signing a new three-year contract with United in April.

It also remains to be seen what happens with goalkeepers Dean Henderson and David De Gea, neither of whom is likely to settle for being an understudy, and there is some uncertainty over the futures of Phil Jones and Nemanja Matic.

Jesse Lingard is in the last year of his contract at Old Trafford - GETTY IMAGES
Jesse Lingard is in the last year of his contract at Old Trafford - GETTY IMAGES

Axel Tuanzebe, Brandon Williams, Diogo Dalot, Andreas Pereira and Facundo Pellestri are among those who could exit for loan fees or even permanently in some cases. Tahith Chong has already joined Birmingham City on loan.

United were determined to land their two leading summer targets in Sancho and Varane, despite the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic which has cost the club upwards of £150m, but any more signings will have to be funded by sales.

Solskjaer would like a defensive midfielder and the club has a firm interest in Trippier. United have also been sounding out potential midfield replacements for Pogba.

United’s revenues for the 2019/20 season were down to £509m from £627m the previous year and that figure could yet dip below £500m for last season in what would be the lowest turnover for six years. United’s revenues for the nine months to March 31 this year stood at £400.1m, a £27.4m drop on the corresponding period last season.

There is also a need to make some space on a soaring wage bill. Wages for 2019/20, when the club were not in the Champions League, were £284m but that figure stood at £238.8m for the first nine months of last season after their return to the competition and will comfortably top £300m for the year.

United’s wage to turnover ratio could surpass the 60 per cent mark for last season, a figure beyond what the club are usually comfortable with.

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