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Man Utd transfer news: Ten Hag invites surprise free agent to training

Robin Bairner
Erik ten Hag, Man Utd, 2023/24
© IMAGO

Manchester United might not have added to their squad during the January transfer window, but Erik ten Hag could yet make a shock signing via a free agent.

Although clubs cannot complete transfers at this point of the season, they can sign players who are not tied to a team – and that possibility is live at Old Trafford as Ten Hag has invited one such player to training.

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Former England U21 goalkeeper Joe Lewis is training with Man Utd.

The 36-year-old was released by Scottish Premiership side Aberdeen at the end of last season, having played more than 270 matches for the Pittodrie club.

Having come through the Norwich youth academy, he had notably played with Peterborough, Blackpool and Fulham in the Championship, while he even made one Premier League appearance with Cardiff City in the 2013/14 season.

Lewis, though, is working beside Man Utd’s backup options Altay Bayindir and Tom Heaton.

“I was training initially with the academy but in the last few weeks I’ve been training with the first-team as well,” he told Sky Sports. “I’m trying to stay fit, keep myself busy and learning loads.”

The goalkeeping role at Old Trafford has been one that has caused some controversy this season, with Andre Onana struggling to settle at the club after big-money move from Inter that was rushed through after David de Gea departed the club on a free transfer.

Like Lewis, De Gea remains a free agent.

Indeed, there is no indication, that the Red Devils are thinking about making the move for Lewis a permanent one, with the keeper simply working with team to stay sharp ahead of other opportunities.

Lewis is currently working as a television pundit, having worked alongside Kris Boyd and Chris Sutton during Aberdeen’s 2-1 loss against Rangers in the Scottish Premiership on Tuesday – a match that was notable for being the first Neil Warnock had taken charge of the Pittodrie club.

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