Manchester United’s Ten Hag Eyes Atalanta’s Rasmus Hojlund
With an eye on shaping Manchester United’s future on the pitch, new manager Erik ten Hag has reportedly been engaging in a series of video conversations with Atalanta’s young striking sensation, Rasmus Hojlund. It’s an intriguing move from a manager who has always shown an aptitude for developing young talent while remaining realistic about the transfer market.
Manchester United’s Target Locked
Ten Hag has seemingly found an attainable target in Hojlund, given United’s understanding that Tottenham’s talisman Harry Kane is firmly off the table. A potential twist in the tale, according to Samuel Luckhurst at The Manchester Evening News, is the ongoing negotiations between the SEG International agency, which represents Ten Hag, to add Hojlund to their client roster.
A 20-year-old Danish International, Hojlund’s credentials are steadily growing. In 41 appearances for Atalanta, he’s found the net 15 times since his move from Austrian side Sturm Graz just last year. Add to this, his current hot streak of five goals in two games for Denmark.
Ten Hag on Building for Future
In a recent admission, Ten Hag confirmed that he has been in conversation with potential targets. This admission implies a proactive stance towards building a Manchester United side tailored to his vision. He noted a marked shift in player attitudes towards the United project compared to last year, observing a keenness to be part of what’s taking shape at Old Trafford.
“I see a big difference in comparison with last year,” Ten Hag said.
“There were a lot of reservations last year when I spoke with players and now many players see the project, what’s going on, the dynamic and the ambition in this project, the quality especially. They are really keen to come, I’ve noticed that.”
Keeping an Eye on Other Prospects
Alongside Hojlund, United are keeping a close watch on Eintracht Frankfurt’s high-flying striker Randal Kolo Muani. The French forward has shown a keen eye for goal, notching 23 goals in 45 appearances for the Bundesliga side. The failure of Eintracht and Atalanta to secure Champions League spots could potentially make transfers less complicated for buying clubs. Both Hojlund and Muani are contracted until 2027.
United’s Track Record with Atalanta
United have prior experience dealing with Atalanta in the transfer market. In 2020, the Red Devils signed young winger Amad for a fee that could potentially rise to £37 million. Atalanta’s reputation for nurturing and developing young talent adds a layer of confidence to United’s interest in Hojlund.
Last year, Manchester United engaged in talks with the representative of striker Benjamin Sesko, another promising talent developed in Austria with Red Bull Salzburg. The recent focus on Rasmus Hojlund, however, suggests that United and Ten Hag are exploring a range of options to bolster the squad’s firepower and lay the foundations for a bright future at Old Trafford.