Manchester United’s $127m Moises Caicedo transfer approach would not replicate Mason Mount saga
Manchester United’s pursuit of Mason Mount in the summer transfer window is at risk of following the same pattern as the Frenkie de Jong saga.
While United hit difficulties last year persuading De Jong to move to Old Trafford, this time the concern surrounds the player’s parent club Chelsea. The Blues appear reluctant to agree a fee with the Reds and MEN Sport understands the club’s hierarchy are becoming frustrated with Chelsea’s unwillingness to negotiate.
With United becoming frustrated, it appears it will only be a matter of time before Erik ten Hag switches his priorities to another midfield target because we already know there is an eagerness to buy a midfielder sooner rather than later. One name touted as a Plan B option is Brighton and Hove Albion’s impressive midfielder Moises Caicedo.
The 21-year-old defensive-minded player enjoyed a brilliant campaign with the Seagulls but looked to be heading for the exit in January after he took to Instagram to express his desire to leave. Caicedo posted: “I am grateful to Mr. Bloom and Brighton for giving me the chance to come to the Premier League and I feel I have always done my best for them. I always play football with a smile and with heart.
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“I am the youngest of 10 siblings from a poor upbringing in Santa Domingo in Ecuador. My dream always to be the most decorated player in the history of Ecuador.
“I am proud to be able to bring in a record transfer fee for Brighton which would allow them to reinvest it and help the club continue to be successful. The fans have taken me into their hearts and they will always be in my heart so I hope they can understand why I want to take up this magnificent opportunity [to leave Brighton].”
Despite his best efforts, the transfer in the winter window fell through and he remained a Brighton player. When asked about his midfielder’s future, Roberto De Zerbi appeared to suggest he would not stand in the way of Caicedo should he wish to leave the south coast.
He told reporters: “Caicedo is a very, very good guy, I can understand him [wanting to leave] because when you are 21 and you receive interest off a big, big team, they are playing in Europe competitions, I can understand. I would like him to finish the season with us but we are ready to go forward without him.”
De Zerbi appears to already have a plan in place to replace Caicedo which should make negotiations much easier for the Reds than with Chelsea. The Ecuadorian has already admitted his dream to play for United and follow in the footsteps of Antonio Valencia so it should be a no-brainer for Ten Hag to pursue him.
But Brighton will try and drive a hard bargain for their man so United must remain wary of potentially overpaying.
A Manchester Evening News special souvenir edition – Fergie’s First – charts United’s 1992/93 title-winning campaign and you can get your hands on one here