Cody Gakpo gives Man Utd fresh hope of transfer as talks confirmed

Antonio Conte previews Man Utd trip

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Manchester United have been handed hope of reigniting their interest in PSV Eindhoven forward Cody Gakpo by none other than the player himself. Gakpo was one of two names at the forefront of Erik ten Hag’s attacking summer shortlist, but he was made to wait for his marquee move.

The 23-year-old was also heavily linked with Leeds United and Southampton, among others, in the latter stages of the transfer window. However, he decided to snub interest and stall for a high-profile transfer, which he is making significant strides towards in the early stages of this season.

Ten Hag’s decision to opt for a more familiar face in Antony would’ve come as a blow to Gakpo. And he has since confirmed he held a series of talks with the Dutch coach and admitted his disappointment that a dream switch to Old Trafford didn’t come to fruition.

Gakpo told The Times: “I was close to leaving [PSV]. I spoke to Erik ten Hag a few times at Manchester United. In the end, the deal didn’t go through, which was a shame because Manchester United is one of the biggest clubs in the world. Also, for PSV [it is a big thing], because to transfer a player to Manchester United is a good thing for the club.”

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Gakpo will once again be a name on many clubs’ shortlists as early as January amid an astonishing start to the campaign. The Netherlands international has scored 13 goals and registered 11 assists in all competitions, making it 24 direct involvements in 18 appearances.

That figure is higher than any other player in Europe’s top leagues, even eclipsing Erling Haaland’s impressive haul of 23. Meanwhile, United are struggling for goals, despite creating a plethora of chances as Ten Hag’s system continues to instil into his squad, prompting questions of what could’ve been had a striker of Gakpo’s stature arrived.

He was thought to be available for around £40million after PSV failed to qualify for the Champions League after a playoff defeat to Rangers. But United opted for Antony at the request of Ten Hag, despite the Brazilian winger costing more than double at £82m.

The Red Devils will likely be in the market for a striker at the end of the season, though, with Cristiano Ronaldo expected to depart and Anthony Martial’s injury issues remaining problematic. And Gakpo’s comments are sure to have given Ten Hag and the club optimism to re-enter the frame when the time comes.


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