Ligue 1

Ugarte Man United, Xavi Simons swap

Ugarte, Rabiot links played down

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Manuel Ugarte has been discussed as a transfer target for Manchester United and it’s an interesting story after he only arrived at PSG last summer to great fanfare. He joined from Sporting Lisbon for a big price tag and started well, though he then dropped off quite significantly, especially after PSG’s Champions League adventure started.

I think the biggest issue for Ugarte at PSG was that he was signed before Luis Enrique’s arrival as manager was properly finalised. Enrique simply doesn’t play in a style that has space for someone of Ugarte’s profile. He was not signed off by Enrique, so when he inherited the squad, as much as others at PSG thought he would be a good signing, the Uruguayan has ended up being one of a number of signings from last summer to have not quite bedded in as well as many would have expected.

So, Ugarte to United seems to have gathered pace quite significantly and it’s not too surprising. I think Ugarte is tailor-made for the Premier League and I think the drop-off from Casemiro in the season just gone means it’s normal United would be looking for a profile like that to replace him.

It’s also a good time for PSG to sell Ugarte because he’s in good form for the Uruguay national team at Copa America, so the fact that he’s performing well at an international tournament means his value won’t drop as drastically as it may have done as he’s not been that important at club level in the second half of last season. So it makes sense for PSG, United, and for the player.

A lot of the interest in Ugarte prior to his move to PSG was from clubs in Italy, and it would probably now be quite difficult to find as many Serie A teams who can pay the same sort of fee and wages that United can, so that would have been difficult for PSG in terms of extracting the best possible value from him this summer.

Manuel Ugarte to Manchester United?

It’s a critical moment as well because if this drags on and Ugarte finds himself out of favour with Enrique at the start of the new season with PSG, it will become that much harder for them to command the kind of fee they’ll want, and perhaps even half what they paid for him 12 months ago. If he goes now, PSG won’t make…

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