Exclusive – Watford have offered Ismaila Sarr to Manchester United, who are considering an offer for the Senegal winger now that Liverpool have turned their attentions elsewhere.
There is an acceptance at Vicarage Road that the 22-year-old will leave the club this summer to play top level football. He impressed in the Premier League last term despite their relegation, and the club are not prepared to hinder his development by forcing him to spend 2020/21 playing in the Championship.
To that end, a source has told 90min that they have stepped up their approach to move him on, and have offered him to United. The Red Devils, who see him as a potential alternative to Jadon Sancho, are keeping a keen eye on the situation, and are mulling over an offer.
What may interest United is that Watford are open to a loan deal. They do not want to give up on Sarr unless their £40m asking price is met, so if that is unattainable this summer, they are prepared to sanction a season-long loan, with the view of either cashing in next year, or bringing him back into the fold should they secure promotion.
Watford’s refusal to budge over a fee turned Liverpool, who were interested, away at the door. The Reds have instead zeroed in on Wolves’ Diogo Jota over the past 24 hours, and feel the Portuguese forward – who conflicting reports say will cost somewhere between £35-45m – offers better value for money.
That deal will be announced imminently, and opens the door to United, who can now be considered the primary contender for Sarr.
All hope is not lost on a deal for their main target Sancho, but it is appearing less likely by the day. A short-term deal for Sarr, with a view returning to the negotiating table with Dortmund in a year, may be a sensible course of action.
Other alternative targets include Juventus’ Douglas Costa and Ousmane Dembele of Barcelona.