Man United transfer news: La Liga title winner keen on Old Trafford switch - The Verdict

Atletico Madrid midfielder and Man United target Saul Niguez clapping

Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez is eyeing up a move to Manchester United this summer, according to The Sunday Mirror (Page 72, print edition).

The 26-year-old has been linked with Juventus and PSG, but he has reportedly made it clear that his preferred next destination is Old Trafford.

Niguez is believed to have a buy-out clause in the region of £60m. However, Atletico may be willing to sell him for around the £40m mark, as they look to raise funds despite winning La Liga last month.

This asking price could tempt United into making a bid, as the Red Devils look set to be busy in the upcoming transfer window. 

The 19-cap international is understood to be on United's long list of transfer targets this summer, but he is not a priority signing for the 13-time Premier League champions.

If United do step up their interest in the midfielder, would he be a good signing for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side?

GIVEMESPORT's Sam Brookes, Joshua Cole, Christy Malyan and Jonathan Gorrie express their opinions below...

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Sam Brookes

"Niguez is exactly the player that Solskjaer needs. 

"When comparing United's current midfield to the other top clubs in the Premier League, there is clearly a problem for Solskjaer's men. 

"In that central midfield role, City currently have the likes of Fernandinho and Ilkay Gundogan, Liverpool can call upon Fabinho, while N'Golo Kante showed the importance of having a world-class operator in this position in the Champions League final for Chelsea recently.

"United have Fred. 

"Without wanting to be overly-critical of the Brazilian, it does not seem likely that United will be winning any major silverware with him at the base of their midfield. Niguez, on the other hand, is an outstanding player who could hold his own against other midfield generals, and he has experience of winning trophies at Atletico.

"United could do with someone who is accustomed to getting over the finish line, while also improving their starting line-up, and Niguez offers them both of these things."

Joshua Cole

“Whilst Saul did play a key role in helping Atletico Madrid seal the La Liga title this season by making 33 appearances for his side, there is no guarantee that he will be able to cope with the intensity of the Premier League.

“Therefore, it could be argued that it would be somewhat of a mistake if Manchester United decided to splash the cash on him this summer.

“With Solskjaer keen to further Scott McTominay’s development by playing him on a regular basis alongside the likes of Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes in the heart of midfield, Saul may struggle for game-time at Old Trafford and thus ought to instead consider furthering his stay at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium.

“Having already made one glaring error in the transfer market by signing Donny van de Beek last year, United cannot afford to mess up their recruitment again this year if they are to challenge Manchester City for the Premier League title."

Christy Malyan

"Saul Niguez can transform United's troubled midfield, especially in terms of balance. In theory Manchester United already have box-to-box midfielders who can do a bit of everything in Paul Pogba and Donny van de Beek.

"The only problem is that Pogba's a little too interested in getting forward, which is why Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's settled for playing him from the left for the tail-end of the season, and as far as van de Beek goes - well, I'm not sure I've ever seen him pass the ball forwards. It's always a pivot and a sideways or backwards ball.

"In short, both have their functional limitations and I can only assume that's a big part of the reason Solskjaer's spent much of the season playing Fred and Scott McTominay behind a roaming Bruno Fernandes, rather than opting for a single holding midfielder behind two more creative players as is the norm these days.

"But Saul gives that mixture of quality, industry and discipline that might just convince Solskjaer he can set up his team with a single defensive midfielder, while still letting Fernandes do what he does going forward with the Spaniard shuttling around in between. Saul's played everywhere from No.10 to centre-back throughout his career and you don't last long under Diego Simeone unless you have perfect positional discipline.

"Throw in his knack of scoring goals in crunch knockout fixtures, which highlights what he offers offensively, and I think he really is the perfect signing to evolve United's midfield while negating the risk of leaving the back line too exposed."

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Jonathan Gorrie

"Few would doubt Saul Niguez's quality.

"The La Liga winner is a man capable of playing on the biggest stages.

"However, with United reportedly chasing a defensive midfielder, he really doesn't appear to fit.
Granted, he can play there but, at a reported £40m, is that really the best use of funds? Paying big money for a player and not deploying him in his best position, which has largely been as an orthodox central midfielder capable of pushing forward?

"Square pegs, rounds holes and all that.

"If United are serious about signing a new anchor-man, they have to go for a specialised option.

"Not just sign another big name. If United have learned anything since Sir Alex Ferguson retired, it has to be that glamour does not necessarily guarantee success."

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