ESPN: Ten Hag tells Man Utd to explore January deal for Milan star

By Oliver Fisher -

Rafael Leao is one of two names that Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag wants to replace Cristiano Ronaldo, according to a report.

According to ESPN, Ten Hag has asked the United leadership to consider making a January signing to replace Ronaldo and Leao is on a list of targets which also features PSV Eindhoven winger Cody Gakpo.

Originally the management did not want to make a big investment in January after spending more than £220m over the summer but Ronaldo’s exit will save a huge amount on wages and creates a gap for a new forward.

United were keen on Gakpo over the summer but they eventually managed to agree a deal to sign Antony from Ajax. However, Ten Hag remains a keen admirer of the 23-year-old – who he knows from his time as Ajax boss – and now a €50m deal could be explored.

However, the Dutch side hope he will stay until at least the end of the season given they are in a title race, so that is why Leao is also being considered as an option. The 23-year-old scored 14 goals last season and netted his first goal in his first World Cup appearance earlier this week.

Tags AC Milan Rafael Leao


  1. 100 million is a great accomplishment for Milan. Because Milan already lost a lot of time in negotiation. We can see how Theo, Kalulu, Tonali, and De Ketelaere all rejected other clubs for AC Milan. And Club should focus on developing players until revenues reach 500 mill per year. You can’t keep an unhappy player in the squad. Leao if wants the money, must be sold, ASAP so money can be generated on a more positive side: paying bonuses for players who stayed and investing in another quality potential player. Leao still could be fine in premier league or he could finish like Kessie – it is 50% – 50% chances for him.

    1. Yeah. Leao leaving Milan for ManU would be kind funny though… He’d be focusing on playing on EL instead of UCL and would forget about lifting any trophies for the next 5 years or so. But I guess it’s still better than getting only pathetic 6-8M€/year and winning trophies in a good & healthy environment, right? 🙂

  2. Rubbish…
    If ten hag didn’t want Ronaldo because he didn’t press enough playing as a CF in a 3 man forward line as if he would want Leao who presses exactly the same?

      1. So,,, Ten Hag would just have to change his tactics to suit Leao’s attitude better. I mean, he’s far better and bigger GOAT than CR7, right? 😀

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