After adding young fullback Malacia from Feyenoord and finishing up paperwork to bring former Tottenham Hotspur star Christian Eriksen to Old Trafford, Manchester United have agreed a deal in principle with Eredivisie side Ajax for stalwart centre back Lisandro Martinez.
The deal is set to set the Red Devils back at least €55 million, but for new manager Erik Ten Hag it should be well worth it as Martinez grew exponentially under the tutelage of United’s new Dutch boss during his three seasons in Amsterdam.
Under Ten Hag with Ajax, Martinez, 24, had made 118 appearances for the Dutch side since he joined from Argentinian side Defensa.
Martinez was one of the best ball playing centre backs in the Eredivisie last season with an 88% pass success while making some of the most progressive passes and entries in the league.
On top of his accurate passing set, Martinez is also very dominant aerially despite only standing at 5’9. He should make a valuable additon alongside the likes of another dominant ball player in Harry Maguire, or even the athletic Raphael Varane.
It’s no secret that Ten Hag’s system is very particular and he is collecting players who can play in that system with the likes of Malacia, who played against Ten Hag’s Ajax side for a few seasons and really impressed with him, while also being linked with Frenkie de Jong, another Ajax product.
With the signing of Martinez, however it should be a sign of things to come as the overhaul in Manchester is underway.