Football Features

Manchester United transfer odds: Bookmakers’ favourites to join Erik ten Hag’s ’10-signing revolution’

By Ben Green

Published: 18:00, 25 June 2022 | Updated: 18:07, 3 July 2022

After months of speculation, Erik ten Hag was installed as the new permanent manager of Manchester United.

The former Ajax boss left Amsterdam at the end of the 2021/22 season and succeed Ralf Rangnick, who had taken the Old Trafford reins on a temporary basis since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was relieved of his duties back in November 2021.

Untested in a top-five European league, Ten Hag is walking into a cauldron of uncertainty and unrest in the North West. So, despite his glittering Ajax CV and a seemingly idealistic tactical blueprint, there remains a shred of doubt about his capacity to elevate this Man Utd side.

“It’s embarrassing, it’s disappointing, maybe even humiliating,” Rangnick lamented following Man Utd’s second 2021/22 capitulation to Liverpool in April, losing 4-0 in an utterly abysmal showing, which also provoked Gary Neville to describe this current squad as “a waste of space”. 

Such is the worrying state of Man United’s squad that Rangnick believes an almighty rebuild is required, going as far as to suggest that just one player is safe in the current starting XI. “For me, it is clear there will be six, seven, eight, maybe ten new players,” he explained. So, it looks like Ten Hag could be busy this summer.

With that, we looked at the bookmaker’s favourites to join Man United before the summer window shuts. Major surgery is required ahead of 2022/23, and Ten Hag is a man who is completely in tune with his playing philosophy, so Carrington could have a very Shibuya Crossing feel to it soon…

All odds in this article are for the summer transfer window and accurate at time of publication (14:30, 14/06/22). You must be 18+ to gamble. For more information, visit Be Gamble Aware.

Pau Torres

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair

One area where Man Utd badly need strengthening is central defence so it comes as no surprise to see their name associated with Villarreal centre-back Pau Torres, an extremely talented left-sided ball-playing centre-back, who has a release clause in his present contract which expires in 2024, roughly £55m, after he signed an extension with the Yellow Submarine three years ago. United’s interest is reasonably sound. He’s cut from the same cloth as previous centre-backs who have excelled in Ten Hag’s system. Torres’ speed and passing ability makes his side more flexible when defending with a high line, as this is exactly what Ten Hag’s philosophy demands, while Harry Maguire is relatively slow by modern centre-back standards, so the Spaniard would provide competition for the much-maligned England international.

Declan Rice (West Ham)

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair
5/1 4/1 4/1

Perhaps even more fitting in that regard would be Declan Rice. West Ham, and more specifically David Moyes, have already tried their best to bat away claims that their prized asset could be on the move this summer, saying it would take a nine-figure sum to prise him away. But Man Utd are a club with very deep pockets.

The 23-year-old would walk into any side in the world and has largely been responsible for West Ham’s rise into Europe and recent Europa League semi-final run, where a showdown with Frankfurt awaits. Moyes has several influential chess pieces, but none more so than Rice, his ‘modern queen’ if you will.

It’s the type of marquee signing that would really whet the appetite of fans and could prove game-changing on the pitch, and not just from a marketing perspective. Man United have fallen foul and been accused of making signings on a whim and putting ‘business’ ahead of football in recent seasons, but a transfer of Rice’s ilk would point to a more well-thought-out, strategic approach.

Youri Tielemans (Leicester)

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair
5/1 5/2 5/2

It’s clear where Man United’s priorities lie, or should lie, this summer. Few trust the double-pivot of Fred and Scott McTominay, which doesn’t exactly scream Roy Keane and Paul Scholes. The signing of Youri Tielemans, therefore, makes sense in some capacity.

Neat and nimble on the ball, hard working and bags of Premier League and international experience, Tielemans has been Leicester’s midfield catalyst in recent seasons and enters the final year of his contract this summer. Domestic signings tend to come at a premium, but the Foxes may be tempted to cash in, rather than risk losing a player of Tielemans’ quality on a free transfer next year.

Such a scenario leaves Leicester potentially ripe for poachers, and Man United will probably be sniffing around the East Midlands if it’s an elegant playmaker they’re after.

Frenkie de Jong (Barcelona)

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair

Another option in midfield, though a luxury signing more than anything, is the aforementioned Frenkie de Jong, who played such a pivotal role in Ajax reaching an unlikely Champions League semi-final berth in 2019. Before that campaign had finished Barcelona swopped in for his signature and it’s at the Camp Nou where the Dutchman is currently playing his trade, though, if reports are to be believed then the powers that be at Barça — seeking to balance the books — are more than happy to part company with De Jong with United a potential new home. De Jong arguably played his best football under Ten Hag and it’s understandable if the new Man Utd boss wants to reunite at Old Trafford.

Harry Kane (Tottenham)

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair
12/1 7/1 7/1

By all accounts Kane is happy under Antonio Conte and Manchester City will not be pursuing his signature this summer after turning their attention to Erling Haaland. However, the suggestion is that Kane has his heart set on staying in the Premier League to potentially catch Alan Shearer in the all-time scoring charts. He is currently fifth on 178, with Shearer on 208.

So, if transfer speculation reignites this summer, Man United could be a very appealing option for Kane. That being said, Man Utd will not have Champions League football, something Tottenham can offer him, so  he may find a move to Old Trafford not that very tempting. Despite Man United’s recent nosedive and the fact they themselves may also finish outside the top four, the status of playing for them remains unparalleled.

Ousmane Dembele (Barcelona)

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair
20/1 25/1 25/114/1

Barcelona have reportedly offered fresh terms but have so far been unsuccessful in negotiating a contract extension with Ousmane Dembele, so the mercurial French winger looks destined to leave the Camp Nou this summer. Despite his injury problems, Dembele remains only 24, with time very much on his side, and as he has proven on numerous occasions this season, he is still an absolute menace when he plays. He will no doubt demand a hefty wage package, but without a transfer fee, Man United may feel he would be a better avenue to explore rather than risk splurging excessively on, say, another Jadon Sancho type.

Antony (Ajax)

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair
4/5 1/4 1/416/1

A new fixture in Brazil squad, Antony may feel he is ready for the next step after excelling with Ajax, where Ten Hag guided him, and he’d probably be right. Creative, slick on the ball and unpredictable, Antony is an archetypal Brazilian forward, able to dazzle and transfix terraces in the blink of an eye. His aggressive yet suave playing style would offer Ten Hag something a little bit different, and let’s face it, the Dutchman loves a Brazilian wide man (e.g. David Neres).

Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund)

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair

Things haven’t exactly worked out (yet) the last time Man United plundered the Ruhr Valley, but in Jude Bellingham Borussia Dortmund have a generational talent, one whose still tender years belie a maturity and unwavering composure in possession. Bellingham represents signing that could prove power-shifting, that’s how good he is, or certainly how good he has been for BVB. A midfield fulcrum and precocious leader, Bellingham would thrive under the paternalistic tutelage of Ten Hag, who has blooded in and rapidly developed the career of fellow baby-faced midfield maestro Ryan Gravenberch.

Christian Eriksen (Free agent)

Sky Bet Paddy Power Betfair
4/7 4/9 4/96/5

A heartwarming story this season was Christian Eriksen’s comeback after suffering a heart attack last summer at the European Championships, the Danish playmaker showed he’s still made of the right stuff at Brentford and in turn alerted other clubs including former club Tottenham as well as United, who are reportedly keen to bring him to Old Trafford as means to strengthen their playmaking options.