Multiple reports claim that Manchester United have agreed to sign Swansea City youngster Daniel James for $19.5 million.
James, 21, has had a breakout year in England’s second tier for the Swans, with the pacy forward catching the eye in several FA Cup games as he has scored six goals and added seven assists in all competitions.
According to our partners at Sky Sports in the UK James is wanted by several other Premier League teams and has just one year left on his current contract, but United are close to signing the Welsh international who almost joined Leeds United in the January transfer window.
That deal broke down on Deadline Day, and James kicked on in the second half of the campaign and is regarded as one of the top players in the Championship. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has mentioned several times that he wants United to sign young, hungry players and James certainly fits the bill.
His style of play is also a bit of a throwback for United, with his style reminiscent to Ryan Giggs as James dribbles and runs at defenders all game long, and can back that up with searing pace on the break. Given United’s penchant as a counter-attacking team under Solskjaer, James should slot in very well at Old Trafford.
Is this the huge marquee signing United’s fans were hoping for? Nope. But how has that worked out for them in the past?
Alexis Sanchez, Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku have come in with fortunes spent, and the jury is out as to whether any of those superstars have been a roaring success. Then there’s Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Angel di Maria, Bastian Schweinsteiger and others…
With the likes of Declan Rice, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Jadon Sancho all linked with moves to United this summer, Solskjaer is trying to overhaul his squad with young British talent who are eager to prove themselves.
This move for James could signal the start of a modest, but very important overhaul in their squad. It seems like United could be getting smarter in the transfer market, as Ed Woodward and Co. aren’t willing to splash plenty of cash of established names and are instead focused on polishing gems who have broken through at other clubs.
At this point, they’ve tried pretty much everything else in the transfer market. Why not sign British players who won’t cost quite as much and develop them into stars?