Manchester United have joined Barcelona in the race to sign Real Sociedad midfielder Martin Zubimendi, according to Mundo Deportivo.
The Red Devils bolstered their midfield department with Casemiro and Christian Eriksen in the summer and the duo are currently undisputed starters under manager Erik ten Hag.
This has not stopped the speculation linking midfielders with the club and it is now reported that the Red Devils have expressed an interest in Zubimendi, who is also on Barcelona’s radar.
Sociedad are said to be attentive over the same but have no plans of parting ways with the 23-year-old in January unless any club triggers the release clause on the midfielder’s contract.
Zubimendi signed a new long-term deal with Sociedad in October this year. His current buy-out clause of €60 million will reportedly increase to €65m during the winter transfer window.
United unlikely to pursue another midfielder in January
United are currently loaded with midfield options. The future of Fred is uncertain under Ten Hag, but the club may only make a decision at the end of the campaign.
Hence, the Red Devils are unlikely to make a huge outlay to bring Zubimendi. The same can be said for Barcelona, who are prioritising a new right-back for January.
If United are to spend this winter, the focus could be on signing a new striker to compensate for Cristiano Ronaldo’s release. A low-cost replacement could be pursued.
The right-back department is another position that needs to be reinforced. Ten Hag has entirely relied on Diogo Dalot this term. Aaron Wan-Bissaka has been ignored.
The former Crystal Palace man has played just four competitive minutes this campaign and he could be offloaded in January to recoup funds for a quality replacement.