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SPORTS UPDATE

Man U intensifying interest in Feyenoord left-back Malacia

Manchester United have accelerated their interest in Feyenoord left-back Tyrell Malacia in an attempt to beat Lyon to a deal in the region of £13million.

Erik ten Hag had heavily scouted the 22-year-old as Ajax manager, appreciating his speed, positional awareness, high interception rate, and ability to attack space.

Malacia fits the profile of player the Dutchman wants at Old Trafford and he shares an agency – HCM Sports Management – with Frenkie de Jong; the club’s premier target this summer. The same agency also represents Donny van de Beek and Victor Lindelof.

Talks are progressing well over an initial £56m deal for the Barcelona midfielder, which has allowed United to pivot to other players on a shortlist for their rebuild.

New Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag takes charge of his first training session since joining the club from Ajax

Reports in Holland suggest an agreement has already been reached with Feyenoord for Malacia, with United not distancing themselves from strong interest in the Netherlands international.

United have returned to pre-season training this week, with Ten Hag taking charge of his first session with the club’s players.

“This is an interesting one, left-back is where Man United are well stacked. There’s not necessarily a most desperate need for them.

“One person I speak to say he’s the best left-back in the Eredivisie. Malacia is rapid, quick and loves to get forward. You see lots of flashy recovery tackles which look great but also worries me, when a defender has to go back.

“He puts in so much yardage, he’s keen to get involved in the play going forwards which is what Man United fans want to see. I can see why there’s interest from United as such a dynamic player can change the way you attack.”

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