Manchester United are tipped to land centre-back Kim Min-Jae in the summer after his excellent season for Napoli.

Kim Min-Jae could be heading to Manchester United this summer with the centre-back’s release clause active in early July.

Goal report Min-Jae’s release clause sits at just £42 million. Italian newspaper Il Mattino has reported Manchester United are heavy favourites to sign the South Korean.

And after a terrific season at Napoli, it might just be time for a new challenge for the defender.

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SSC Napoli v ACF Fiorentina - Serie A
Photo by Giuseppe Maffia/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Why Kim Min-Jae needs new challenge

It is not usual for a player to leave a club after just one season. Kim Min-Jae signed for Napoli in July 2022.

Kim Min-Jae’s release clause presents a quite unique situation and opportunity, combined with his success.

The centre-back has been so outstanding for Napoli this season, that he could be ready for a completely fresh challenge already.

The 2022/23 campaign has been an immensely successful one for the defender. He played a key role to lead Napoli to their first Serie A title in more than 30 years.

Kim Min-Jae has now also been named Serie A’s ‘defender of the year’. He was presented with the award last night ahead of Napoli’s win over Sampdoria – which he was suspended for.

The way to look at this is that Kim Min-Jae has already conquered Italian football in one season.

With Manchester United hovering, there is no unfinished business for the South Korean in Naples.

Manchester United and Erik ten Hag can offer the defender a totally new challenge, in a new league, at a team considered to be outsiders for the title rather than favourites.

United are keen on Min-Jae as a replacement for outgoing defender Harry Maguire.

He would have to fight for his place in the defence among Lisandro Martinez, Victor Lindelof and Raphael Varane. And this should be part of the appeal.

Min-Jae has enjoyed the perfect season at Napoli, and if he wants the easy option, he will stay put.

Manchester United can offer something different, a totally new challenge. If he decides to embrace it, then we know already that he is the right character for this football club.

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