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Man Utd dealt transfer blow in pursuit of Evan Ferguson

Manchester United want to sign a striker this summer as Erik ten Hag will be left with only one centre-forward in the coming months, but Daniel McDonnell of the Irish Independent says the Red Devils have been dealt a blow in their pursuit of Evan Ferguson.

The 18-year-old, who has successfully risen through the youth ranks to Brighton & Hove Albion’s first-team, plans to commit his future to the Seagulls, so a summer sale doesn’t look on the cards. Brighton have a chance to finish in a Europa League spot this season, so it’s easy to see why he’d stay.

United may need Martial upgrade

It’s bad news for United, however, as the top-flight giants will be stunted in attack when Wout Weghorst’s loan move is up. Anthony Martial isn’t a bad attacking option, with a respectable seven goals from 12 starts this season, but his long-term future at Old Trafford is up in the air.

The 27-year-old is out of contract next year and might not have his deal renewed as he’s been out of favour and short of playing time in the last two years. Man United have been linked with Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane and Napoli’s Victor Osimhen, so either player would replace Martial.

Ferguson would be more of a project as he’s only 18 years of age, but the Republic of Ireland international has great potential. Since joining from Bohemians in 2021, Ferguson has scored 18 goals from 39 games for Brighton’s U21s and scored eight goals from 23 games for the first-team.

He’s more likely to be play at Brighton than United, so it might be smarter for his career to stay at the Amex for at least another season. The Red Devils are looking at tried and tested strikers to challenge on all fronts in 2023/24, so Ferguson likely wouldn’t be a regular under Ten Hag.

That being said, the 6ft 2in centre-forward has twice as many league goals (4) as Weghorst (2) this season, so he would improve the United squad. Brighton have him tied down until 2026, so they would hold all the cards in negotiations. And given Ferguson hasn’t shown a desire to leave, a deal looks dead in the water.

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