Cody Gakpo move would spell trouble for two Manchester United players

Manchester United are pursuing PSV Eindhoven attacker Cody Gakpo, it was reported by The Telegraph this week.

Gakpo scored 21 goals in all competitions for PSV last season and already has three goals this season.

A move for the 23-year-old would cost £35 million, although is complicated by PSV’s upcoming Champions League qualifiers against Rangers.

This is a product of United leaving a deal so late. We will see what happens, but there’s plenty to unpack about the impact Gakpo’s possible arrival would have at Old Trafford.

READ MORE: Confirmed Manchester United transfers, ins, outs, loans, releases for 2022/23

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Cody Gakpo move could spell trouble for two at United

The attraction of signing Cody Gakpo is his production in the final third and his ability to play across the front three.

He can play up front as a striker, filling in when Anthony Martial and Cristiano Ronaldo are unfit, in circumstances like we saw last weekend.

Gakpo’s preferred position is on the left-wing, and this spells trouble for two Manchester United players.

It’s very possible United’s front three ends up as Gakpo – Ronaldo – Sancho, with both Marcus Rashford and Anthony Elanga moved down the queue.

Marcus Rashford: There’s an argument to be made that Gakpo’s arrival could benefit Marcus Rashford long-term. The duo would split playing time, decreasing the demands on Rashford. United have seen in the past that it can be costly to overplay him, resulting in injuries.

Rashford’s short-term ambitions are too important, however. He needs to perform well for Manchester United now to try and earn a recall for England and make the 2022 World Cup.

He also has an expiring contract with his deal running out in 2023. There is an option to extend a year, but Ten Hag has to approve this, let alone a long-term contract, and most of all Marcus Rashford has to earn it.

The potential arrival of Cody Gakpo would throw a major spanner in the works of Rashford’s crucial bounce-back season.

A report last night from L’Equipe claimed PSG have been in contact for Rashford. With Gakpo potentially arriving, this wouldn’t be a disaster for United.

Anthony Elanga: There are no positives for Anthony Elanga if Cody Gakpo signs at the club. The youngster is already under a little pressure right now.

Elanga has not scored since February (Rashford not since January but did net three in pre-season) and began the season on the substitutes bench.

The jury is still out on the youngster, who has produced mixed first team performances since breaking into the first team. In order to improve, he needs game time, and being behind Cody Gakpo and Marcus Rashford will be a blow for his chances.

There is also the threat of Alejandro Garnacho behind him too. Garnacho won’t be too negatively impact by Gakpo’s possible arrival. He is a special player who will force his way in, and likewise, it could be at the expense of Rashford and Elanga.

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