Ranking Manchester United's five Bundesliga signings amid Nkunku and Kone links
Manchester United are still keeping track of French midfielder Kouadio Kone who plays for Bundesliga side Borussia Moenchengladbach.
According to L’Equipe, the Red Devils are one of three European giants who are monitoring the former Toulouse man who made the move to Germany in 2021.
Juventus and Atletico Madrid, two sides that qualified for next season’s Champions League, are the two other clubs keeping an eye on the 21-year-old who made 29 appearances last season.
Erik ten Hag’s need for midfield reinforcements is a result of both Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic leaving the club as free agents when their contracts expire next month.
The 52-year-old’s compatriot and former Ajax player Donny van de Beek is likely to come into consideration under his former manager, as well as James Garner who shone in Nottingham Forest’s Championship play-off final victory.
Manchester United’s Bundesliga signings
With United’s interest in Kone being reported upon in France, along with ongoing links to Christopher Nkunku, United in Focus ranks Manchester United’s Bundesliga signings.
5 – Bastian Schweinsteiger
Manchester United spent £14.4m to sign the German World Cup winner from Bayern Munich in July 2015.
Schweinsteiger arrived at Old Trafford at the age of 30 and was reunited with Louis van Gaal who he played under between 2009 and 2011 when the Dutchman was in charge of the Bavarian giants.
The classy midfielder played 32 times under Van Gaal in his first season in England, but things completely changed for him when Jose Mourinho took over from Van Gaal.
Schweinsteiger made just three appearances under the Portuguese and he was banished to train with the club’s youngsters before joining MLS side Chicago Fire in March 2017.
United weren’t signing a player who was in his prime and as time went on it was clear why Pep Guardiola was willing to let the Bayern Munich legend go – his best years were behind him, but a what a career he had.
4 – Shinji Kagawa
Sir Alex Ferguson signed the Japan international, who came off the back back of scoring 13 goals and providing 12 assists from 31 Bundesliga for Borussia Dortmund under Jurgen Klopp, for £12m in June 2012.
The attacking midfielder only had one season under the legendary Scotsman, which saw him lift the Premier League title and score a hat-trick at Old Trafford against Norwich City.
Kagawa was in and out the side under David Moyes, but he wasn’t given a look in under Van Gaal and he ended up re-joining Klopp’s Dortmund on the last day of 2014 summer transfer window.
The 33-year-old is currently playing in the Belgian Jupiler Pro League with Sint-Truiden.
Kagawa’s United career could have ended up differently if Sir Alex had stayed at the club, but it didn’t prove to be and the following managers didn’t have the same faith in the creative midfielder.
3 – Henrikh Mkhitaryan
Four years after signing Kagawa, Manchester United signed Dortmund’s chief creator once again with the Armenian superstar Mkhitaryan being signed by Mourinho in July 2016.
Armenia’s all-time top scorer with 32 goals, who was the 2015-16 Bundesliga player of the season and scored 23 goals in all competitions, as well as a staggering 32 assists, was brought in to bolster United’s forward line.
In his solitary full season at the Theatre of Dreams, Mkhitaryan scored six goals en-route to United’s Europa League success, including our second in the 2-0 win against Ajax in the final.
He finished the 2016-17 campaign with 11 goals and five assists. Despite starting the following season in fine form with one goal and five assists from the opening five Premier League games of the season, Mkhitaryan was moved on in January.
The Armenian moved to Arsenal as part of the infamous deal which saw Alexis Sanchez come the other way. Mkhitaryan spent 18 month at the Emirates before moving to Roma on loan.
He moved to the Giallorossi on a permanent deal in September 2020 and he won the Conference League with Mourinho this season, but his contract in the Eternal City expires at the end of next month.
2 – Jadon Sancho
The most recent of Manchester United’s Bundesliga signings is the man who brings the most excitement due to his potential.
Sancho, a £73m signing from Dortmund last summer, has had a difficult first season at Old Trafford and his performances alone don’t warrant him being ranked top of this list.
But we’re being positive and have full faith that we will see the Sancho, who scored 50 goals and provided 64 assists from 137 Dortmund games, unlocked and unleashed by Erik ten Hag.
The 22-year-old remains one of the most talented players across Europe and under the tutelage of Ten Hag, Sancho is likely to become a key part of the Dutchman’s side and help spearhead United’s fight to the top of the footballing mountain.
Sancho has shown glimmers of his best form, but with time on his side – there is no doubt it will all click into place for the former Manchester City youngster and when it does – opposing defenders are going to be turned inside out by the tricky winger.
1 – Owen Hargreaves
The versatile England international was signed from Bayern Munich for £17m in July 2007, in a transfer window which also saw Nani, Anderson and Carlos Tevez sign for the Reds.
Hargreaves made 34 appearances in his first season at the club which saw Fergie’s side win the Premier League and Champions League double.
Hargreaves scored a great free-kick against Arsenal in the Premier League, and he played the full 120 minutes against Chelsea in the Champions League final in Moscow, before smashing his penalty into the top corner.
But the Reds released the injury-plagued midfielder, who suffered with tendinitis in both knees, when his contract expired in 2011 .
Hargreaves then joined Manchester City on a free transfer but only made four appearances for the Citizens before calling time on his career.
Manchester United may have only got one season out of Hargreaves, but it was a very successful one and he would have remained a key part of the side if he hadn’t been riddled with injuries.