Manchester United and Liverpool to face off for Ajax Amsterdam starlet Ryan Gravenberch
According to By TelegraafManchester United and Liverpool are set to go head to head to sign Ajax Amsterdam prodigy Ryan Gravenberch.
The 19-year-old midfielder has risen through the ranks at Ajax and, despite his young age, is already a regular at the Eredivisie champions. He has so far made 74 appearances for them, score ten goals and help eight.
His performances have not gone unnoticed in England, with Liverpool and United both enthusiastic. Midfielder is an area where both teams need reinforcements and Gravenberch have a great long-term option.
Central midfielder who can also double in a defensive role, Gravenberch is an excellent passer. A competent player in the air, he can also shoot a pop or two on goal himself. If he continues to develop as planned, the youngster could become a real presence in midfield.
United, for their part, have options. But Fred, Scott McTominay and Nemanja Matic are all industrious while lacking in dynamism. Their lack of imagination is visible and limits the team’s ability to get the ball out from behind.
With Paul Pogba’s contract situation also unresolved, bringing in a new midfielder could be a priority rather than a luxury next summer. Gravenberch has shown his ability to perform at the highest level and become a long-term asset at the Theater of Dreams.
The same goes for Liverpool, who need an infusion of young blood in the middle of the park. Jordan Henderson and Thiago Alcantara are in their 30s, while James Milner is getting closer to the one-day call. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita are struggling with injuries, while Georginio Wijnaldum’s exit left another void.
Jurgen Klopp is used to developing promising young talents, and in Gravenberch could arise another project. Alongside Harvey Elliott, the young Dutchman could be the future of the Reds midfielder in the decade to come.
Both clubs, however, face certain challenges to overcome. Mino Raiola, who represents Gravenberch, is not an easy man to manage. He also represents Pogba in what could be an additional problem for United. The treatment of Donny van de Beek, recently linked to a return to Ajax, has also done the club’s reputation a disservice.
Gravenberch’s father also wants the youngster to stay put at Ajax and develop his game further. While he is certainly capable, there are some issues that need to be ironed out. Staying in place before moving could ease the transition.
The young Dutch international’s contract expires in 2023. Ajax have already contacted the player’s representatives, and it remains to be seen what he chooses to do now.
Gravenberch seems destined for the top and has many years to go. Developing your game before taking a big step elsewhere might prove to be the best approach.