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Latest: Man United Lead Arsenal and AC Milan in £34m Striker Chase

Man United Leading the Race for Highly Talented Dutch Forward

Joshua Zirkzee, the talented Dutch forward currently plying his trade at Bologna, has been the subject of recent transfer speculation linking him with a move to Manchester United. According to Teamtalk, Zirkzee’s agent, Kia Joorabchian, has reportedly offered Manchester United a discount on the agent’s fee to facilitate the transfer. The article states, “Joorabchian is refusing to budge on his €15m demand, though the same source reports he is willing to give Man Utd a handy discount.” This significant reduction could see the commission fee drop to €9.5m/£8m, potentially smoothing the path for Zirkzee’s move to the Premier League.

Manchester United’s interest in Zirkzee is driven by their need to strengthen their attacking options, with Zirkzee identified as a top target. The club’s eagerness to finalise the deal quickly, amid competition from AC Milan, underscores their commitment to bolstering their squad with young talent. Though with him at the euros it’s unlikely to move fast.

Looking at the Key Stats

Joshua Zirkzee is a 23-year-old centre-forward who has been making waves in Serie A with Bologna. Standing at 1.93 meters, Zirkzee’s physical presence and goal-scoring ability have made him a standout performer. This season, Zirkzee has made 34 appearances in Serie A, netting 11 goals and providing 5 assists.

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His contributions are not limited to club football; Zirkzee is also part of the Dutch national team squad for Euro 2024, showcasing his rising profile on the international stage. He played 2496 minutes last season so there’s a good sample size for all analysts to work with.

Drawing Comparisons

When comparing Zirkzee to Matheus Cunha, several key statistics stand out. Both players have similar goal-scoring records, but it’s their underlying numbers that provide deeper insight. Zirkzee’s expected goals (xG) this season stand at 9.0, while Cunha’s xG is slightly higher at 9.5. In terms of non-penalty expected goals (npxG), Zirkzee has a npxG of 7.4, compared to Cunha’s 8.7.

These statistics highlight their proficiency in creating and converting goal-scoring opportunities. Additionally, their contributions extend beyond scoring. Zirkzee has a higher number of touches in the box, reflecting his active presence in attacking positions. Cunha, on the other hand, demonstrates versatility with a notable number of assists (seven), indicating his ability to support teammates and create chances. It’s understandable why United have been linked with both.

Likelihood and Fee

Zirkzee’s market value is currently estimated at €50.00m, reflecting his potential and performances. His contract with Bologna runs until June 30, 2026, providing Bologna with a strong negotiating position in theory, but the release clause means ths5s all irrelevant. However, the willingness of his agent to negotiate a lower commission fee could be pivotal in sealing the deal with Manchester United. As noted by Teamtalk, the sticking point remains the agent’s fee, with Joorabchian initially demanding a substantial €15m. The reduced demand of €9.5m/£8m could make the transfer more feasible for United.

David Ornstein’s mention of United’s interest further solidifies the belief that this transfer is possible. Manchester United are poised to activate the release clause in Zirkzee’s contract, aiming to secure his signature ahead of competitors like AC Milan. This move could provide United with the attacking reinforcement they need for the upcoming season. Nothing until after the euros but this is one to really keep an eye on.

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