Erik ten Hag could hand Jurrien Timber ideal Man United shirt number with transfer decisions

Jurrien Timber could be given an ideal shirt number if he makes a move to Manchester United this summer, although that depends on the future of Eric Bailly and Phil Jones.

Erik ten Hag has many positions to fix in his new team this summer and although the midfield is a priority, the core of defense also needs serious reinforcement. United have just completed their worst Premier League campaign ever after managing to pick up just 58 points, with their porous back being one of the main reasons.

Despite spending nearly £200million on centre-backs in recent years, United remain defensively shaky, with even the arrival of four-time Champions League winner Raphael Varane failing to save him. to fix. The Frenchman had a difficult first season in England but was far from the worst culprit.

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That dubious honor goes to Harry Maguire, who has struggled throughout the last year with his form falling off a cliff following his exploits for England at Euro 2020. Victor Lindelof had decent performances but has a quality ceiling while Bailly and Jones spent most of the time. marginalized campaign and are now peripheral figures.

In fact, United are ready to let both centre-backs go this summer as the planned release goes beyond the six stars who leave when their contracts expire. Bailly may be tough to pass as he signed a new long-term contract until 2024 last year and his injury record doesn’t exactly make him appealing. Jones may find suitors ready to kick him after impressing following his return to action after two years of injury torment.

Should they both leave, the No. 3 and No. 4 shirts would once again become available at United for the first time in several years, which would be an ideal number for Timber. Although United are also tracking Villarreal’s Pau Torres, consulting club Ten Hag on the Spaniard, Timber has also emerged as an attractive option.

The 20-year-old was almost always in Ten Hag’s league-winning side last season and is clearly highly regarded by the new manager. Timber has a great cast, can play anywhere down the back and his young age means there’s no immediate pressure for him to be a regular starter or an instant hit, which would make him a smart signature.

The Dutchman currently wears number 2 for Ajax and the national team, but that’s unavailable at Old Trafford as he’s currently occupied by Lindelof, who is unlikely to leave or give up on him this summer. However, No. 3 or No. 4 are both numbers typically worn by defenders and carry appropriate prestige, so would be perfect for an exciting signing like Timber.

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