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Man Utd monitoring “exciting” teenager who could partner Mainoo for years

Written by on May 2, 2024

Sir Jim Ratcliffe has quite the task on his hands when it comes to transforming Manchester United, starting with this summer’s transfer window and potentially finding the perfect partner for rising star Kobbie Mainoo.

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The Red Devils have gone from top four qualification and a Carabao Cup victory under Erik ten Hag to capitulating in a disappointing second season to leave the Dutchman’s future in doubt, even despite another chance to win domestic silverware. That said, it’s an important summer for the manager at Old Trafford, who could see several improvements made to his side.

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Among those may well be Barcelona defender Ronald Araujo, with the Red Devils reportedy willing to offer the centre-back a salary increase in order to lure him into an Old Trafford switch in the coming months. When it comes to solving United’s defensive problems, welcoming Araujo would go a long way for Ten Hag.

It’s not just the backline that could see summer improvements, either. Recent reports have also linked Frenkie de Jong with a move to the Premier League giants, as United look to finally land a long-term target in a deal for another Barcelona star. De Jong would provide an ideal balance between Mainoo and the future partner Ratcliffe may have lined up.


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According to Fussball News, Manchester United sent scouts to watch Assan Ouedraogo ahead of a potential summer move to sign the 17-year-old Schalke midfielder. It remains to be seen just how much the Red Devils would have to splash out, but the prospect of 19-year-old Mainoo sitting alongside another teenage gem in Ouedraogo is certainly enticing enough to meet whatever Schalke’s price-tag may be this summer.

They’re not alone in their interest, however, with Newcastle United, Manchester City and teams in Germany and Italy also sending scouts to watch the young German in the 2.Bundesliga this season.

“Exciting” Ouedraogo can match Mainoo rise

It’s a sign of the positive transformation that Ratcliffe is attempting at United that Ouedraogo is among the names being eyed this summer instead of players who are arguably past their prime in the middle of the park. Thinking about the future rather than players who may hand Ten Hag short-term improvements should be the focus, in planning that will go a long way in helping the Red Devils return to the top of English football for good.

Ouedraogo, at 17 years old, has earned links with teams of such calibre and, in-turn, the praise of Football Talent Scout’s Jacek Kulig, who described the midfielder as “exciting”. Largely used as a box to box midfielder or in the number ten role this season, the teenager has scored twice and assisted twice in 15 league matches, and standing at 6 foot 2 should already have the physicality to complement Mainoo’s guile.

Mainoo is a similarly exciting player and getting the best out of the England international should be one of the priorities at Old Trafford, which welcoming fellow young gem Ouedraogo would accelerate significantly, rather than falling back on the likes of Scott McTominay and Casemiro.

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