Manchester United are reportedly still trying to sign Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund this summer and are willing to offload up to six players to balance the books.
But one of those players is not Jesse Lingard, despite the 27-year-old being left out of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's squad for the Premier League opener. According to The Sun, Solskjaer urgently wants a left-back (Alex Telles) and rising star Sancho.
So who will be sold so that the desired fees of £17 million for Telles from Porto, plus up to £100 million for Sancho, can be met?
Chris Smalling is a saleable asset given the 30-year-old's impressive displays for Roma last season, with United wanting an £18 million fee. Fellow defenders Phil Jones, Diogo Dalot and Marcos Rojo are also reportedly up for sale, while Dean Henderson's position as a strong challenger to David de Gea means Argentine goalkeeper Sergio Romero is available.
Lastly, Brazil international Andreas Pereira is another player United might like to get off the wage bill, especially with the recruitment of Donny van de Beek increasing the options in midfield.
So that's six players up for grabs, but Lingard is not necessarily one of them. The England international played the full 90 minutes of United's 3-0 win over Luton in the Carabao Cup (the supposedly unwanted six did not take part at all).
There's even talk that Lingard could be offered a one-year contract extension to tie him to the club until 2022. Perhaps Ole just knows what a magnificent influence JLingz would be on Sancho if and when he arrives.
Of course, all of this is conditional on moves being arranged for several of United's squad players, as well as Borussia Dortmund and Sancho still being open to making a deal happen.
The German club apparently set a 10 August deadline to get a deal done. However they reckoned without transfer genius Ed Woodward, whose tactic often appears to be waiting until the very last minute... then paying whatever the selling club was asking for anyway.
Perhaps that's unfair on Woodward, as Van de Beek for an initial £35 million looks excellent business for a 23-year-old Dutch international.
Adding Sancho to United's youthful attacking options including Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood would give Solskjaer a mouthwatering array of attacking options. But a lot will have to fall into place for the deal to happen this summer.
Has Ed offered Borussia a direct swap deal for Diogo Dalot yet? It really cannot hurt to try.
All imagery: PA Images
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