Amadou Haidara is Ralf Rangnick’s top midfield transfer target at Manchester United, reports The Times.
Rangnick’s reported desire to sign Haidara is understandable, given that he helped recruit the midfielder for Red Bull Salzburg, and then signed him for RB Leipzig.
The 23-year-old has since learned under Julian Nagelsmann, and this year he is working under Leipzig boss Jesse Marsch.
Marsch is continuing Haidara’s development into a complete all-round midfielder.
Haidara still getting better
As explained by RB Leipzig’s official website, the role Haidara is playing this season differs to the last.
Leipzig explain: “Under Julian Nagelsmann, the 23-year-old featured both in defensive and attacking midfield. However, new RBL head coach Jesse Marsch has preferred to exclusively play Haidara as part of a central midfield pairing.”
Haidara said of his current role: “Even if I didn’t play there much last season, I still know this position and the tactical aspects of it. I want to play where I can be the most help to the team, because that’s important in order to be able to win.
“I always want to improve, in attack as well. I’ve been able to take advantage of my chances in front of goal so far. I hope it continues like this.”
This season Haidara has scored twice, already halfway to last season’s tally of four.
While many United fans have been calling for a defensive midfielder, Haidara is a little different. Similar to Fred, the Mali midfielder is an all-action, energetic player, as strong off the ball as he is on it.
As he is currently demonstrating for Leipzig, Haidara is a box to box player comfortable with various positions, and this versatility could help him play a role in Rangnick’s system.
Rangnick knows him well, and the variance in coaching he has also picked up from Nagelsmann and Marsch can only have helped build his skill set and knowledge further.
He has been playing as one of two central midfielders in Leipzig’s 3-4-1-2 formation, a similar system to the one United used away at Tottenham.
While this is not the formation United are likely to play regularly under Rangnick, it will either be a 4-3-3 or 4-2-2-2, Haidara is adding to his game by adapting it.
There is still a big question mark over whether he will be signed due to the upcoming African Nations Cup, which could delay his arrival at United until February if United move.
United will have to scour the market to see if there are any similar talents available worth snapping up, or decide whether Haidara is simply worth the wait.
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