Erik ten Hag may not be granted his wish to add to his squad in January after Manchester United overspent in the summer.
United had a net spend of over £200m in the summer, close to double the outlay originally expected in the first window under Ten Hag.
The United chiefs felt under pressure to fund a late splurge following the embarrassing defeats to Brighton and Brentford at the start of the season.
The club is already reaping the rewards of the summer spend with the likes of Tyrell Malacia and Lisandro Martinez in particular playing a signficant role in their four-game winning run since those early disappointments.
United don’t play again until October 2 and Ten Hag revealed last week that he wanted to use that time to “improve structures” and consider transfer targets in the winter window.
He said: “We have many meetings — we have to improve the structures in and around the club,” Ten Hag said. “And we will also look to the window in January or next summer already.”
A report on Friday claimed Ten Hag would be handed a £70m budget in January, which could rise to £100m if they can find a suitable buyer for Cristiano Ronaldo.
Ajax forward Brian Brobbey is thought to be high on Ten Hag’s shortlist – ‘he likes him the most’ – while Youri Tielemans is rumoured to be the ‘chosen one’ in midfield.
But The Athletic claim he could be left without any further additions until the summer.
Owner Joel Glazer, chief executive Richard Arnold and John Murtough are said to be ‘focused firmly on summer 2023 as the next opportunity to significantly add to Ten Hag’s squad’.
It’s said that money made from the sales of players like Ronaldo or Aaron Wan-Bissaka would be available to reinvest in January but ‘there may need to be some reconciliation between Ten Hag’s aspirations and budget realities’.
The report adds that ‘cannier recruitment would grant greater flexibility on transfers’, which, it’s thought, could be what Ten Hag was hinting at when he said they need to “improve the structures” at the club.
In any case, it’s unlikely Ten Hag will be handed close to the rumoured £70m in January, with £0m more likely.
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