Manchester United's top attacking alternative to Darwin Nunez should be Antony

There is an increasing risk Manchester United end up missing out to Liverpool to Darwin Nunez. The Athletic report talks are ongoing between Liverpool and Benfica.

It’s tough to read whether Liverpool actually will go out and spend £80 million on the striker, or their interest is being used to flush out United, but at this price, it’s time to look elsewhere.

Manchester United need a striker, but the club’s next attacking move might actually end up being for Antony instead.

Antony was reported to be an early priority for Erik ten Hag to sign from Ajax,  The Telegraph reported, but this has gone a little quiet over the past month, with Nunez focused on instead.

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United’s top attacking alternative should be Antony

With Nunez priced in the £80 million range, and Antony likely to cost around £50 million, it was never likely Manchester United would sign both, not with so many other giant holes requiring fixing, in midfield, defence, and full-back.

If Nunez is off the table, a move for Anthony should rise to the top of the agenda as Manchester United’s top attacking alternative.

He is one of the top attacking players on the market, with a genuine possibility to become one of the next generation’s top players over the next decade.

Antony scored 12 goals and provided eight assists for Ajax last season before getting injured at the end of the campaign, lighting up the Dutch side’s season with his trickery.

Erik ten Hag spoke about how much Ajax missed him when he was out, commenting via FCUpdate: “We all miss him. Without Antony it is all a bit less fast and dynamic on the right, which also makes it more difficult for the team. Then the spaces become a lot smaller.”

The prospect of having Antony on one wing and Jadon Sancho on the other is an exciting one, and United still have Amad, Facundo Pellistri and Anthony Elanga to mix and rotate in, dependent on who stays and who goes on loan.

There are no other top striker options on the market worth paying £60-80 million for, if Nunez is unattainable. Some would rightly question whether the Uruguayan is even worth that price. So it would be a terrible mistake to overpay for an alternative – instead the money would be better used on a top level option in another attacking position, which is where Antony fits in.

Antony would be a crowd favourite at Old Trafford, with the kind of trickery not seen since Cristiano Ronaldo first left the club. Erik ten Hag knows how to get the best out of him too, so deal would be the perfect option, and perhaps even a smarter deal than Nunez.

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So who signs up front?

The reason Manchester United have been linked to Nunez is because the club need a striker to support Cristiano Ronaldo.

Nobody has much faith in Marcus Rashford or Anthony Martial having much of a revival of fortunes at the position under Erik ten Hag.

One option is to chase Robert Lewandowski, this feels like a classic Manchester United short-term solution, so don’t rule it out.

Another is for Ten Hag to buy a striker he knows he can work with, Sebastien Haller, who played for him at Utrecht, and Ajax, and knows the manager’s system perfectly.

United could chase a younger name, with CBS Sports last month linking the club with a move for Lille’s Jonathan David.

If Antony signs for around £50 million, and the club spend around £80 million on midfielders and defenders, then United will likely be left with around £30 million maximum to put towards another striker.

For that kind of price, a young striker is less of a gamble, and United could try to unearth a gem who can learn under Cristiano Ronaldo.

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