Manchester United’s hierarchy are pushing back on Erik ten Hag’s pursuit of Chelsea attacker Hakim Ziyech, according to Samuel Luckhurst.
It was only two years ago that Ziyech moved from Ajax to Chelsea in a £36million deal, but he’s now fallen out of favour at Stamford Bridge.
The Athletic reported earlier this summer that the 29-year-old ‘has not enjoyed a productive relationship’ with manager Thomas Tuchel, and could be available for transfer.
Ziyech was a key part of the Ajax side that reached the semifinals of the Champions League under Ten Hag in 2018/19.
He scored 21 goals and provided 24 assists in all competitions, and netted against Real Madrid (twice) and Spurs in the UCL knockout stages.
All three of United’s signings this summer – Lisandro Martinez, Tyrell Malacia and Christian Eriksen – have either worked with Ten Hag or played in the Eredivisie.
Luckhurst, the chief Manchester United for the Manchester Evening News, told fans on Twitter that the ‘MUFC hierarchy [are] resisting Ten Hag’s interest in Hakim Ziyech’.
The manager views Ziyech as an ‘alternative left-footed attacker to Antony‘, who’s been deemed too expensive at €80million (£67.6million).
United have ‘largely backed’ Ten Hag’s moves for familiar players, but this is seen as an exception.
Luckhurst also says the club ‘failed with an approach’ for another Chelsea player in Timo Werner as part of their ‘shambolic window‘.
Werner has instead returned to RB Leipzig in a £25.3million deal.
It hasn’t worked out for Ziyech at Chelsea, but you can see why Ten Hag might still push for him.
The official Chelsea account have previously billed him a ‘wizard‘, BT Sport have called his technique ‘insane‘ and former United defender Gary Neville has compared him to Manchester City’s Riyad Mahrez because of his ‘lovely’ left foot.
What’s more, The Daily Mail reported last month that he’s available for as little as £8.4million, around eight times less expensive than Antony.
His reported £100,000-per-week wage looks manageable too, with 14 players at United currently earning more than that.
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