Premier League

Man Utd set for Weghorst transfer as Ronaldo replacement

Suraj Radia
Wout Weghorst in action for the Netherlands

Manchester United have lined up a move for Dutch striker Wout Weghorst as they look to find a short-term solution to their striker crisis this January.

United have been left short-handed in attack after the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo last month, with Anthony Martial lacking fitness and Jadon Sancho still absent from the first-team squad.

With Marcus Rashford the only fit senior striker at the club, United have looked to the loan market to provide depth up front and FootMercato claim a deal is close with Burnley to sign Weghorst until the end of the season.

The French outlet state that a loan fee has almost been agreed, with United opting for Weghorst over Al-Nassr striker Vincent Aboubakar.

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Weghorst is currently on loan at Turkish side Beskitas and has scored seven goals so far this season, as well as netting twice for the Netherlands in the 2022 World Cup quarter final against Argentina.

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The 30-year-old joined Burnley for £12 million in January last year but only scored twice in 20 Premier League games before joining Beskitas in the summer but Weghorst now appears likely to cut his loan short to join Erik ten Hag’s side.

United gearing up to sign long-term striker in the summer

While Weghorst’s potential arrival may appear underwhelming to some United fans, the deal is reminiscent of the signing of Odion Ighalo, who joined the club on loan in January 2020 and netted some important goals in cup competitions.

Ighalo was seen as a short-term, mid-season acquisition, similar to Weghorst, with United hoping to completely assess their striking options in the summer ahead of a potential marquee signing.

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Ten Hag is aware of the need to sign a long-term solution up front but accepts that may prove difficult in January, with United having spent more than £200m in the summer and question marks still lingering over the club’s ownership situation.

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Joao Felix is a target that United have had a long-standing interest in, while the likes of Randall Kolo-Muani and Marcus Thuram have also been considered but the club believe there will be more value in the summer than in January.

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