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Elite Man Utd Target Draws Ronaldinho Comparison As Ratcliffe Looks To Beat Arsenal To €80m signing



Elite Man Utd Target Draws Ronaldinho Comparison As Ratcliffe Looks To Beat Arsenal To €80m signing

Sir Jim Ratcliffe will be delighted as one of his top Manchester United targets has incredibly been compared to all-time great Ronaldinho, though Arsenal hold ‘strong interest’ and are looking to win the transfer race.

Ratcliffe has huge plans for Man Utd and wants to overhaul the squad this summer by selling unwanted players and bringing in top-class stars.

His top objectives include signing Everton defender Jarrad Branthwaite, Crystal Palace winger Michael Olise and Bologna centre-forward Joshua Zirkzee.

The latter could be the first player to join Man Utd in their exciting new era. On Tuesday, it emerged that prospective new Man Utd sporting director Dan Ashworth has sent a scout to watch Zirkzee in action.

The Man Utd official was left impressed as Zirkzee scored from the penalty spot and played a role in Lewis Ferguson’s 61st-minute strike, helping Bologna pick up a 2-1 away win over Atalanta.

Following that great performance, Ratcliffe, Ashworth and Man Utd are likely to step up their hunt to land Zirkzee.

In fantastic news for the Red Devils, Bologna boss Thiago Motta has sensationally namechecked Ronaldinho when discussing his 22-year-old forward.

“He reminds me of the Ronaldinho I played with at Barcelona, but I cannot compare him to anyone,” Motta said.

“He is Joshua, he is special, he enjoys his football and above all works very hard in training. Since the first day of pre-season, he has always been the first to arrive at the camp.

“He has become a leader and it’s all to his credit. We just need to keep accompanying him, because he is certainly on the right path.”

Interestingly, sources have confirmed to TEAMtalk that Man Utd have internally discussed a potential swoop for Motta too, amid uncertainty over Erik ten Hag’s future.

When it comes to Zirkzee, Man Utd are in a good position to strike a summer deal. Although, they could face competition from Premier League rivals Arsenal.

According to Italian outlet Corriere dello Sport, Arsenal hold ‘strong interest’ in the Dutchman. The Gunners are known to be on the hunt for a lethal goalscorer who can provide competition and cover for Gabriel Jesus, with Zirkzee cropping up on their shortlist.

Luckily for Man Utd, Arsenal currently appear to be prioritising a move for Sporting CP’s Viktor Gyokeres. But if that swoop fails, the hunt for Zirkzee could come down to a straight battle between Man Utd and Arsenal.

Bayern Munich have the opportunity to re-sign Zirkzee, having sold him to Bologna in August 2022. However, it is unlikely Bayern will activate that clause, as they can already rely on Harry Kane and Mathys Tel up front.

Instead, Bologna look set to make a big profit on their hitman by selling him to one of England’s biggest clubs. Either Man Utd or Arsenal will have to pay €80million (£68m) to sign Zirkzee

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