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Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag has reportedly sanctioned a Red Devils approach to sign Chelsea playmaker Mason Mount ahead of next season. The England midfielder’s long-term future at Stamford Bridge appears to be highly uncertain as things stand, with contract negotiations seemingly at an impasse following months of internal talks.
Several clubs have been credited with an interest in taking Mount off Chelsea’s hands over the last few weeks, with Arsenal and Liverpool said to be among his potential suitors as the upcoming summer transfer window draws nearer. However, it seems as though United will be looking to steal a march on their Premier League rivals by poaching Mount for themselves between now and the start of the new campaign.
A bid in the region of around £55million is currently being prepared by United figures after Ten Hag urged the club to complete a deal quickly in spite of the ongoing takeover process at Old Trafford, according to the Daily Mail. Ten Hag’s urgency to land the player will mean that either Sheikh Jassim or Sir Jim Ratcliffe will likely have to get their chequebook out to sanction the deal for Mount as one of their first jobs with the takeover saga set to be clarified later on this week. Their proposed offer as things stand remains well short of Chelsea’s valuation, though, with the Blues wanting closer to £85m in order to let Mount leave this summer.
There is said to be a chance that United could increase their offer given Ten Hag’s determination to add Mount to his squad over the coming weeks, with the Chelsea man having reportedly been earmarked as a priority target by the Red Devils. However, it remains to be seen whether they will be prepared to meet the Blues’ valuation of the player or if they will instead try to haggle in an attempt to reach a compromise.
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Chelsea are said to prefer the idea of keeping hold of Mount by tying him down to a new and improved contract, although they are thought to be resigned to losing him after being left frustrated in their efforts to negotiate a deal in recent months. His existing contract is poised to expire in the summer of 2024 as things stand, which could see Chelsea faced with a dilemma over whether to cash in this year or risk his exit on a free transfer at the end of next season.
Mount is unlikely to be short of options if he does end up leaving Chelsea at some point in the not-too-distant future, with former England midfielder Danny Murphy having recently insisted that he would be expected to play regularly if he joins United, Arsenal or Liverpool before the new campaign gets underway.
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“With Mason Mount there are takers, that’s for sure, you are talking about a terrific player,” Murphy told talkSPORT. “I am a big fan of Mason Mount. The criticism this season has been fine because he has had a poor time, as has the team, but he has been at a huge club for four seasons and three of them he has been excellent.
“The fact is he is going to have a choice, because nearly all the big clubs are in for him. They are in for him because they can see what a talent he is, he has just had a little bad spell. From a football perspective I think he gets in Liverpool’s team, Man United’s team and at a push he could get really good game time in Arsenal’s team.”
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