REPORT: United Planning ‘Audacious Swoop’ For £130K p/w Striker

Manchester United are weighing up a move for Aston Villa forward Ollie Watkins, according to talkSPORT.

The radio station claims that the Red Devils are plotting an “audacious swoop” for the England international, who has scored 27 goals in all competitions this season.

It is believed that any deal will be tricky to pull off. Unlike United, Villa will be playing in the Champions League next season and Watkins has also recently signed a new five-year contract, worth £130,000 a week.

Even before he put pen to paper on an extension back in October, it was reported that Villa would demand £75m for the player and they have likely increased his asking price since then, based on his form this campaign.

United need to provide competition for Hojlund

Anthony Martial is expected to leave Old Trafford at the end of the season when his contract expires. The Frenchman’s departure will mean that Rasmus Hojlund is the only recognised striker in the first-team squad.

Consequently, Erik ten Hag’s side will be in the market for a new No.9 this summer. Their interest in Watkins is, therefore, not completely surprising but they have been linked with other forwards as well.

Ajax’s Brian Brobbey has been on the club’s radar for quite some time, while the likes of Sporting Lisbon’s Viktor Gyokeres and Brentford’s Ivan Toney are also thought to be targets that the club have considered.

Other Premier League clubs are interested in Watkins

Both Arsenal and Chelsea have been mentioned as potential suitors for the 28-year-old over the past six to twelve months but they were reportedly put off by how much it would cost to sign him.

Unless United manage to raise significant funds through player sales, it seems pretty unlikely that they will have the money necessary to finance a bid for Watkins.

David Tully

David Tully

David has worked as a football reporter for the last fifteen years. Having started as an intern at Snack Media, he then went on to become a freelancer, working on various different sites. At the start of 2023, he took up his current role as content writer for National World's Football News Network.