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Manchester United target backed to thrive at Old Trafford with "no doubt" claim

Ryan Smart

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Manchester United target backed to thrive at Old Trafford with "no doubt" claim

Manchester United defender Tyrell Malacia believes that Red Devils transfer target Cody Gakpo is ready to star at Old Trafford, should he sign for the club.

Gakpo has been in impressive form this season for PSV, scoring nine goals and providing 14 assists in 14 Eredivisie appearances.

He has carried that form into the World Cup, and scored in each of Netherlands' three group games.

He is the joint-second top scorer at the tournament, alongside seven other players. Kylian Mbappe leads the way with five goals.

Gakpo has been linked heavily with a move to United in January, with Italian journalist Rudy Galetti claiming last month that a deal was close to being finalised.

And the player himself told The Times in a recent interview that he had held talks with Red Devils boss Erik ten Hag in the summer over a move.

However, PSV chief executive Marcel Brands told ESPN NL (via Tribal Football) that, while United had submitted a bid, it did not meet the selling club's valuation.

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Leeds boss Jesse Marsch told the Men in Blazers podcast that the Whites also came close to signing Gakpo in the summer, but the player was now out of the club's price range. Fabrizio Romano has claimed a fee of £43m could be enough to convince PSV to sell.

It appears likely that it will be United who swoop back in for the player in January - and one of his potential future team-mates has backed him to be a success.

Malacia on Cody Gakpo

Malacia is currently at the World Cup alongside Gakpo in the Netherlands squad, although is yet to make an appearance in Qatar for Louis van Gaal's side.

Speaking to The Athletic, Malacia said: "He's good enough for the top, there's no doubt."

And Dutch captain Virgil van Dijk also spoke highly of his compatriot - but the Liverpool star did give Gakpo a word of warning about choosing his next club carefully.

He said: "Are Manchester United and Real Madrid the same level at this moment? No disrespect, not at all.

"I think he definitely has a next step in him. I definitely feel like it could happen. Whether it happens in the winter or next year, time will tell."

Gakpo will have to choose his next step wisely - but given his form at club and international level, he looks likely to be able to make that step.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Manchester United, Cody Gakpo, Tyrell Malacia, Virgil Van Dijk, PSV, Netherlands, Football World Cup

Ryan Smart
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