Manchester United’s confidence in Antony has waned due to his underwhelming start in the Premier League this season. In an effort to fortify their attacking options, the club is reportedly considering offloading Antony during the January transfer window. The winger, who has struggled since his arrival, he could potentially regain his form through a loan spell elsewhere. Manchester United had invested £82 million to secure his services initially.
Erik Ten Hag, the manager at Old Trafford, is facing mounting pressure as his team fails to show the prowess required to contend for the Premier League title or compete for trophies. While United’s recent 1-0 victory over Fulham provided a temporary respite, the performance left much to be desired.
Bruno Fernandes salvaged the match with a 91st-minute goal, making him the joint top scorer for United in the current season alongside Scott McTominay.
The team’s lack of firepower in the final third is a significant concern for Ten Hag. To address this issue, Manchester United has identified Gabriel Barbosa from Flamengo as a top target for the January transfer window. Negotiations for the 27-year-old Brazilian, whose contract expires in 2024, could potentially lead to a deal worth around £20 million. Additionally, Manchester United is open to offering Antony to Flamengo on loan until the end of the season.
Flamengo is interested in acquiring Antony, hoping to alleviate the disappointing start to his season, which has seen him go without a goal or assist in eight Premier League appearances. While a permanent departure from Manchester United, whether to Flamengo or another club, is considered unlikely, the club’s decision to part ways with Antony hinges on Ten Hag’s assessment of the player’s value to the team in their current offensive struggles.
AC Milan has also shown interest in Barbosa, and Manchester United’s player-plus-cash offer could give them an advantage if a bidding war arises, as Flamengo is eager to cooperate in the Antony deal.
In case the pursuit of Barbosa falls through, Manchester United has prepared a shortlist of alternatives, including Porto forward Mehdi Taremi, who is likely to be available at a reasonable cost since his contract expires next summer.