Man Utd ‘contact’ Brentford as Erik ten Hag plots ambitious double transfer raid

Football Digest: Analysing Man Utd's failed recruitment

Manchester United have reportedly made contact with Brentford to discuss the possibility of signing Rico Henry this summer. The left-back is now one of two Red Devils targets at the Gtech Community Stadium, with Erik ten Hag also believed to be keen on striker Ivan Toney.

United have been forced to address a shortage at left-back, with Luke Shaw set for multiple weeks on the sidelines due to a muscular injury. Diogo Dalot was shifted over from the right-hand side to fill in against Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

Marcos Alonso, Sergio Reguilon and Marc Cucurella are all reportedly being considered by senior figures at Old Trafford. Express Sport understands that free agent Ryan Bertrand has also made the shortlist.

Now, The Daily Mail claim that Henry has barged his way into the equation, and United have made contact with the Bees to explore the possibility of a late summer deal.

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The 26-year-old’s prominence in Thomas Frank’s Brentford side means it could be nigh on impossible to thrash out an agreement before the deadline on September 1, unless United are prepared to slap big money on the table.

Henry is under contract in west London until at least 2026, and reports indicate that Brentford would be more open to negotiating a possible exit at the end of the season.

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The left-back is now into his third season as a Premier League regular, and he has an outside shout of being included in Gareth Southgate’s next England squad. Henry came through Walsall’s academy before joining the Bees in 2016.

United now have two vested interests at Brentford, amid claims that they are among a selection of top clubs keeping tabs on Toney. The former Peterborough United frontman trailed only Erling Haaland and Harry Kane in last season’s Premier League scoring charts.

However, like Henry, a move for Toney may have to wait until beyond the current transfer window. The striker is currently serving an eight-month FA ban for breaching betting regulations, which will keep him out of competitive action until January.

Toney recently addressed his future on the Diary of a CEO podcast, admitting that he wants to test himself at the top level, but suggesting that a move to either Liverpool or Arsenal would be his preference.

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