According to sources, Manchester United is just £1.7 million short of Ajax’s asking price for Antony as John Murtough works on a deal for the forward. Erik ten Hag aims to make the Brazilian international his fifth signing of the transfer window. However, the Dutchman’s former club is playing hardball in order to keep their major asset.
Manchester United have made a number of signings this summer, including Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen, Lisandro Martinez, and Casemiro.
However, the Red Devils are desperately looking for further reinforcements as they attempt to climb the Premier League rankings.
Antony is one player on their radar, with the Brazil international scoring eight goals and providing four assists in the Eredivisie last season while playing for Ten Hag.
United’s most recent bid, thought to be worth around £76 million, was rejected, with Ajax playing hardball during negotiations.
And, according to 90min, the Red Devils are just £1.7 million shy of Ajax’s asking price for the midfielder, despite the Dutch giants’ reluctance to lose another vital player.
Starting with Ten Hag’s departure, Amsterdam has had a significant summer of transition.
It was announced in April that the 52-year-old will be leaving them to take over at United, where he will follow Ralf Rangnick.
Rangnick was supposed to carry on as a consultant at Old Trafford, but after electing to lead Austria’s national team, he is no longer active behind the scenes.
Ajax has lost Noussair Mazraoui and Ryan Gravenberch to Bayern Munich, with the former leaving for free.
And, before it was revealed that Sebastien Haller would be having cancer treatment, he transferred to Borussia Dortmund this summer.
Antony has tried everything to join United, and the 22-year-old believes a transfer to the Premier League would be a step forward.
He has refused to practice or play for his team in recent weeks, much to his club’s chagrin.
And Antony unleashed a bombshell on Friday when he disclosed his desire to join United, making his efforts to compel a transfer public.
“Since February of this year, my agents have been in Amsterdam informing Ajax of my intention to leave the club to pursue new opportunities, and that some interested clubs would approach with a big offer,” the forward explained.
“Meetings continued during the window months, and I also received a contract renewal proposal from Ajax.”
“I made it clear one more: I intend to leave.”
“I was really pleased in Amsterdam; I won trophies at Ajax, developed friends, and created a portion of my career there, but now I am ready and full of drive to pursue my tale and my aspirations.”
“People must listen to me and recognize that my motivation leads me to happiness.”
“I require this in order to continue performing at a high level.” Ajax will always have a special place in my heart.”
Antony isn’t the only player connected with a move to Manchester United, who are looking for additional offensive reinforcements.
Cody Gakpo is thought to be a target, yet there have been rumors that Ajax is being pressured by links to the PSV Eindhoven player.
Despite Chelsea being the frontrunners for Barcelona star Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, he was linked on Saturday morning.
United are also not ruling out a spectacular comeback for Memphis Depay.
Depay previously spent 18 months at Old Trafford after joining in 2015 but was shipped to Lyon in January 2017 after Jose Mourinho judged him surplus to requirements.
He has since rebuilt his career, implying that a return is possible.