United allegedly has an agreement in principle with Juventus to buy Adrien Rabiot after being defeated 2-1 by Brighton in their first Premier League match.
Ten Hag chose Scott McTominay and Fred to start the game in midfield, but both players struggled and were eventually taken off in a humiliating defeat that highlighted the need for fresh players.
Rabiot, who signed a free-agent contract with Juventus in the summer of 2019, is in the final year of his deal and has lost favor with the Italian powerhouse.
Rabiot has only one year left on his contract, and Juventus is happy to let him leave this summer.
Only now is Manchester United attempting to sign Adrien Rabiot, having lost out to Erik ten Hag’s first choice, Fabian Ruiz.
Frenkie de Jong of Barcelona has been United’s main midfield transfer target this summer, but the club has been keeping other possibilities “warm” in case their pursuit of the player proves unsuccessful.
The midfield for United has been severely depleted after the departures of Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba, Juan Mata, and Jesse Lingard. United has until September 1 to make up for this loss.
Ten Hag considered Ruiz to be “a great alternative” to De Jong and was one of the midfielders United were reportedly examining, according to Goal.
The 26-year-old, a star midfielder for Spain who joined Napoli from Real Betis, has excelled for the Italian club over the past four years, tallying 22 goals in 166 appearances.
The issue for United is that there are other teams that would like to sign Ruiz this summer.
Although Paris Saint-Germain have advanced the farthest in their pursuit of the midfielder, Arsenal and Juventus have also been mentioned.
According to L’Equipe, PSG and Ruiz have reached a personal agreement, and they are currently negotiating a transfer fee with Napoli.
There is still work to be done on that front as the French club’s offer of €20m plus €5m in add-ons falls short of Napoli’s €30m (£25m) asking price.
After selling Gini Wijnaldum to Roma, PSG are in the market for midfielders, and Ruiz has been identified as Luis Campos’ top target.
The advancement the Parisian club has made suggests United should look elsewhere, and Rabiot fills that role.
Rabiot started 227 games during his time at PSG before moving on to Juventus in 2019.
He has appeared in 129 games for Juve throughout the course of his three seasons there, playing for three different coaches.
United is reportedly interested in signing Bologna striker Marko Arnautovic in addition to the France international.
The 33-year-old striker has experience in the Premier League with West Ham and Stoke City and previously worked with Ten Hag and Steve McClaren at FC Twente.
Adrien Rabiot, the 27-year-old France international would be significantly more affordable than De Jong because he is in the final year of his Juventus contract.
The finer points will be worked out with the player’s agent, his mother Veronique, according to the Manchester Evening News, who reports that a sum has been agreed upon with Juventus.