Manchester United’s hopes of selling Scott McTominay may have suffered a further blow with Bayern Munich reportedly split on the £45 million-rated Premier League benchwarmer.
Bayern boss Thomas Tuchel has certainly made no secret of his desire to add a designated ‘number six’ to the Bundesliga champions’ roster.
“What we don’t have is a defensive six, who holds position, thinks defensively, pays more attention to protection and what’s happening in our final third of the pitch,” Tuchel said earlier in the summer.
Manchester United could still sell Scott McTominay
Now, with that in mind, his pursuit of Scott McTominay always felt a little strange from the get-go. As Manchester United supporters will tell you, McTominay’s most effective displays have come in a box-to-box role rather than when he is tasked with sitting in front of the bench and dictating things from deep. See the contract between his rampaging performances for Scotland, for example, and the 3-2 defeat at Arsenal in January, during which he looked all at sea in the absence of a suspended Casemiro.
Reports that the Bayern Munich hierarchy are divided over the prospect of bringing McTominay to the Allianz Arena, then, will come as no real surprise. According to The Telegraph, the Bavarians could shift their focus to Fulham’s Joao Palhinha instead.
And while McTominay has his talents – a fine ball-carrier and a decent source of goals too – Palhinha is, by contrast, the very definition of a natural in the number six role.
In fact, you could make a case that the Portuguese powerhouse is the most underrated defensive midfielder anywhere in European football.
McTominay, meanwhile, appears to have potentially run out of options heading into the final few days of the window. Bayern may be reluctant to spend around £40 million on a player who has his doubters on the Allianz Arena board, while West Ham and Newcastle United have invested heavily on bringing in James Ward-Prowse and Sandro Tonali respectively.