Ralf Rangnick ‘wants to sign’ Jadon Sancho’s friend after Man Utd transfer declaration

Ralf Rangnick wants to sign Borussia Dortmund ‘s Manuel Akanji for Manchester United.

Akanji has recently rejected a new deal at BVB, sparking speculation that the defender could be on his way out of the Signal Iduna Park during the summer transfer window.

German outlet SPORT1 claim that Rangnick is ‘very interested’ in Akanji, who has entered the final 18 months of his current contract.

And the Red Devils appear to stand a good chance of signing the 26-year-old, a close friend of former Dortmund teammate Jadon Sancho, who left the Bundesliga in a £73million transfer last summer.

Akanji has already admitted that United are his ‘dream club’ and the ex- Basel starlet would reunite with Sancho at Old Trafford.

Join the debate! Would Akanji be a good signing for Man Utd? Let us know your thoughts below.

Akanji has rejected a new contract at Dortmund
Akanji has rejected a new contract at Dortmund

“I have a big dream, to get as far as possible in football,” Akanji told NZZ , when he initially signed for Dortmund in 2018.

“Since my childhood days Manchester United have been my favourite club. I’d like to play there one day.

“But right now, that’s not an issue. I am happy at Dortmund and try to be the best possible person off the pitch.”

What could complicate a move to Manchester, however, is that Rangnick is set to leave his post as interim manager at the end of the season and take up a consultancy role at the club, potentially weakening the 63-year-old’s influence on recruitment.

Sancho and Akanji were 'really good' friends at Dortmund
Sancho and Akanji were ‘really good’ friends at Dortmund

Talk of Akanji’s departure follows BVB completing signing of Bayern Munich centre-back Niklas Sule this week.

The German will join the club in June but reports also suggest that they are keen on signing Freiburg sensation Nico Schlotterbeck, who could cost as little as £16.8million, to further shore up their back line.

That could see Akanji rendered surplus to requirements should the right offer arrive, but his employers still want to keep him.

The Switzerland international is said to be demanding an annual salary of €12m, while Dortmund have offered €9.5m and are known to keep a rigid wage structure to avoid financial mismanagement.

The news emerges as Red Devils captain Harry Maguire was singled out by former United defender Rio Ferdinand for his performance in Tuesday’s 1-1 draw at Burnley.

“This season, you’ve seen that [too many below-par performances],” Ferdinand said on BT Sport post-match. “I’m not sure if that’s a hangover from the Euros physically and mentally I’m not sure.

“There hasn’t been the consistency of a player you’d expect of that stature. Behind closed doors he will take responsibility for that, he doesn’t need to come out here and go crazy and he’ll iron it out.

“The challenge he made just over the halfway line [in the second half], he’s lucky to stay on the pitch because I feel the striker is running in on goal.

“It’s a performance he’ll like to erase and get into the next game as quick as possible. But these things happen.”

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