Man Utd remain keen on Kieran Trippier
Manchester United reportedly remain keen on signing Atletico Madrid defender Kieran Tripper as the new interim manager looks to strengthen his first-team squad in the January transfer window.
What’s the story?
United were first linked with the 31-year-old last summer amid reports that he was keen to return to his homeland, but Atleti refused to compromise on his £34m release clause, a fee the Red Devils were unwilling to match.
But now, according to 90min, Trippier could be finally on the move in January as a host of clubs in England’s top-flight keen to secure his services.
The report states that: “Sources have confirmed to 90min that Trippier – who wanted to move back to England in the summer when Manchester United held talks – remains keen on a Premier League return…
“Manchester United are continuing to be kept informed of his situation while we understand that Everton, Aston Villa and Crystal Palace are willing make a move too – if Atletico show an appetite to sell.”
It goes on to state that Newcastle United are also in the running for Trippier, but with Eddie Howe’s charges locked in a relegation battle, it’s unlikely he’ll be persuaded to join the Magpies.
Do Man Utd need Trippier?
Manchester United need him
Although Rangnick has only taken charge of two United games in his short reign, it’s clear to see that the role of the full-backs will differ greatly from what his predecessor Ole Gunnar Solskjaer demanded from them.
While the Norwegian was happy for the likes of Luke Shaw – and particular Aaron Wan-Bissaka – to adopt a safety-first approach, Rangnick demands they get high and wide as often as possible.
In the 63-year-old’s clearly defined system, the left-back and right-back are required to provide the width in a 4-2-2-2 formation, allowing the two No.10 to come inside and wreak havoc in the centre of the pitch.
That factor has already led to United legend Rio Ferdinand questioning the futures of the two current first-choice full-backs at Old Trafford.
“I’ve got to be honest, (Aaron) Wan-Bissaka has got a hell of a job getting back in this team. The same for Luke Shaw,” Ferdinand said on his 5ive podcast (as relayed by Goal).
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“They’ve both got one hell of a job. One thing this manager likes is full-backs who can actually play and get on the ball.”
While Shaw has shown previously that he’s capable of posing a threat in the final third of the pitch, registering 20 assists at Old Trafford, that’s an element of Wan-Bissaka’s game that is often criticised, and if he can’t rapidly improve it, then Rangick will need a replacement.
And in Trippier, United may have found the ideal candidate to do so. The England international has excelled for club and country in recent years, being dubbed “unbelievable” and like a “soldier” by Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate.
The £77,000-per-week gem also played a pivotal part in Atleti’s La Liga title triumph last term, with his underlying numbers looking rather favourable compared to his compatriots.
As per FBref.com, Trippier put in 2.40 crosses per 90 throughout 2020/21, making 7.35 progressive passes, 1.27 key passes and producing 2.73 shot-creating actions.
In contrast, Wan-Bissaka only managed totals of 1.68, 3.68, 0.88 and 1.68, respectively, highlighting the potential struggles that lie ahead when tasked with adapting to Rangnick’s setup.
Therefore, United’s hierarchy must carefully consider a January swoop for Trippier as their German tactician may need him in order to implement his desired system.
And, in other news…Key setback: Rangnick has just been dealt his first big blow at MUFC, he’ll be gutted