Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is willing to move for Jack Grealish even if Manchester United complete the signing of Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho, although the Aston Villa star has been made aware he may not be a certain starter every week.
The confirmation of Champions League qualification has freed the Old Trafford club to embark on more ambitious transfer plans, ahead of what is set to be a busy summer, and Solskjaer is intent on improving the depth of his squad.
That has seen him return to Grealish, who is said to be keen on the move. One potential complication is that Aston Villa’s survival means they don’t have the same financial need to sell, so can ask for a higher price, and way beyond £50m. That could yet see any prospective deal fall down.
United had gone cool on Grealish over the past few months, but sources say Solskjaer has re-assessed the situation, after noting how stretched his best XI was over Project Restart.
United are expected to complete the signing of Sancho in the coming weeks, although they are still a fair bit off Dortmund’s valuation. The two clubs are said to be about “£10m-£15m apart”.
Solskjaer will meanwhile look to move on about six players, including Jesse Lingard and Phil Jones, as he seeks to reshape the squad.
It is possible that Chris Smalling could return after an impressive loan spell at Roma. United are still deciding on whether to move on a centre-half, and that may depend on circumstances, and availability. They have long-standing interest in Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly and Bournemouth’s Nathan Ake, but Manchester City are also looking at both.
Solskjaer meanwhile wants to give Axel Tuanzebe the chance to step in next season, having been impressed with his progress.