Axel Disasi of Manchester United could be Ten Hag’s response to Saliba.
Manchester United is allegedly still interested in signing Monaco defender Axel Disasi, with manager Erik ten Hag looking for defensive reinforcements ahead of next season’s start.
What’s the latest on Disasi’s move to Manchester United?
Following prior speculation over a summer move for the 25-year-old, The Sun now claims that the Red Devils are on ‘alert’ in case a deal for the Frenchman becomes a possibility, despite potential worries about the player’s price tag.
With United evidently afraid of breaking Financial Fair Play standards – while also dealing with a lingering takeover controversy – the article says that landing the former Reims ace may prove ‘tough,’ despite the fact that Ten Hag ‘wants’ him.
If the Old Trafford club is to sign the 6 foot 3 rock in the coming weeks, it is expected that any deal will cost in the region of £34 million, with the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea also ready to pounce with their own offer.
How talented is Axel Disasi?
This quest for a new central defender coincides with the continued uncertainty surrounding Harry Maguire’s future at the Theatre of Dreams, with the 30-year-old recently deprived of the captaincy after appearing in only eight Premier League games last season.
Following his fall down the pecking order under Ten Hag, the former Leicester City man has been extensively linked with a departure, which is why the Dutchman is looking for a figure like Disasi to help give competition for the likes of Victor Lindelof, Lisandro Martinez, and Raphael Varane.
According to talent scout Jacek Kulig, the Monaco machine might prove to be an “amazing signing for any top Premier League club” because he was just “born to play in England.”
If United is able to sign him despite stiff competition, Ten Hag may be able to find a response to another talented Frenchman in the form of William Saliba, who is now thriving for Arsenal after also making the move from life in Ligue 1.
The 22-year-old was first signed by the north Londoners for £27 million from Saint-Etienne back in 2019, despite only breaking into the first-team picture at the Emirates last season after spending the previous several years back on loan in his homeland.
Despite his delayed start in English football, the 6 foot 4 jewels have been simply “exceptional” over the last year or so, according to manager Mikel Arteta, having started 27 league games as part of the club’s ultimately unsuccessful title bid last season.
Saliba has been compared to a “young Rio Ferdinand” by United star Gary Neville and is undoubtedly a player that the Red Devils would like to have on their team, which is why they signed their own version of the Bondy native in the form of Disasi.
The two men appear to share an innate calm in possession, with Saliba ranking in the top 7% of those in Europe’s top five leagues for pass completion, while his compatriot ranks in the top 4% for both progressive passes and progressive carries, demonstrating his ability to play out from the back.
In terms of defense, the pair appear to be similar, with the Arsenal starlet averaging two tackles and interceptions per game in the league last season as a measure of his ball-winning skill, while Disasi is barely ahead with 2.3 from his 28 Ligue 1 outings.
That resemblance between the two towering titans suggests that the United target may adapt to life in England just as easily as his international teammate has recently, with Disasi looking like Ten Hag’s answer to Saliba next term.