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Matthijs De Ligt: Thomas Tuchel encourages Man Utd move

Carlo Garganese
Thomas Tuchel, Erik ten Hag
© IMAGO

Bayern Munich manager Thomas Tuchel has further encouraged Matthijs De Ligt to move to Manchester United this summer.

Tuchel humiliatingly dropped De Ligt for the big Bundesliga match against Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday.

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This further fuelled reports that De Ligt is destined to leave the club in the summer, with Man Utd leading the chase.

And Tuchel has strengthened those reports further by admitting that De Ligt is going through a very tough time, although he insists he still needs the player this season.

Tuchel admits De Ligt struggles

“Yes, he is having a difficult moment as the fight for the place is really strong”.

“I decided not to start him and not to take the risk”.

“Matthijs is a fighter, it’s a competition for places. We need him”.

De Ligt has fallen well down the pecking order at Bayern this season and reportedly does not see eye to eye with Tuchel, who is understood to not be a fan of the Dutch defender.

On Saturday De Ligt received his biggest humiliation yet as Tuchel preferred Eric Dier ahead of the ex-Juventus man.

Tuchel fielded a back three against Bayer Leverkusen with Dier in the middle flanked by fellow centre backs Kim Min-Jae and Dayot Upamecano.

Bayern and Dier produced a horrific performance as they were thrashed 3-0 by Leverkusen, falling five points behind them at the top of the table.

De Ligt stayed on the bench for the whole game.

According to Sky Germany, Bayern have made it clear to Man Utd and all interested parties that De Ligt is available for sale at the end of the season.

FootballTransfers reported this week that Man Utd are in pole position to sign De Ligt, although there is interest from Arsenal.

Man Utd and De Ligt had been interested in doing a deal during the January transfer window but Bayern wished to keep the player until the end of the term.

Man Utd are in the market for at least one top centre-back in 2024 as a number of their current central defenders are likely to leave in the summer.

The futures of Raphael Varane, Victor Lindelof and Jonny Evans are in doubt as their contracts are expiring, while Harry Maguire’s future is not secure either.

Man Utd manager Erik ten Hag is a big fan of De Ligt having worked with him at Ajax.

During that time De Ligt emerged as arguably the most promising young centre back in Europe before signing for Juventus in the summer of 2019.

However, he never lived up to his potential at Juve, who sold him to Bayern Munich in 2022 for €80 million.

De Ligt signed a five-year contract in Bavaria that runs until 2027 but he has also struggled at times at Bayern.

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