5.35pm Man Utd transfer news LIVE: Goncalves 'eyed as Sancho alternative', Cavani OUT vs Milan, Ronaldo return UPDATE

MANCHESTER UNITED will be without Edinson Cavani for their Europa League second leg against AC Milan.

On the transfer front, Sporting Lisbon's Pedro Goncalves as a half-price alternative to signing Jadon Sancho.

Stay up to date with our blog, below, for all the latest from Old Trafford…

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  • Ian Tuckey

    UTD 'MOST SUSTAINABLE SQUAD'

    Manchester United have the most sustainable squad in Europe.

    That is the headline news from a study which suggests United should be challenging for glory both in the Champions League and the Premier League.

    The CIES Football Observatory released its findings on sustainable squad management with United ruled the top dogs.

    Clubs were ranked on three main areas with age structure, group stability and contractual policy assessed to determine the most sustainable teams.

    The report claims the Red Devils are well placed to qualify for the Champions League 'without too much difficulty' in the coming seasons, and are also in a position to 'eventually lift again the Premier League trophy'.

    United are leading the way as the most sustainable European club with Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilbao next best.

    Tottenham are ranked fourth highest for sustainability with Premier League leaders Manchester City below in fifth spot.

  • Ian Tuckey

    EDIN OUT OF AC TIE

    Edinson Cavani has been ruled out of Manchester United's Europa League clash with AC Milan.

    The Uruguayan was named in the squad for the second-leg at the San Siro but suffered 'a reaction to training.'

    Cavani, 34, has missed the club's last three matches after picking up a knock in the 0-0 draw with Crystal Palace on March 3.

    Boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was hoping Cavani would play a part in the contest after returning to training in the week.

    But it appears the clash with AC Milan has come too soon for the striker after suffering a relapse.

    Solskjaer told MUTV: "Unfortunately, it looks like Edinson has got a bit of a reaction to training today and didn’t feel ready to travel."

    United head to Milan needing to score after Simon Kjaer salvaged a last-gasp 1-1 draw in the first-leg.

  • Ian Tuckey

    OLE TARGETS LEAGUE OVER TROPHIES

    Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says trophies are for egos and it is the league which shows real progress for a team.

    Manchester United take on AC Milan in the second leg of their last 16 Europa League encounter on Thursday with the tie poised at 1-1 and have an FA Cup quarter-final with Leicester this weekend.

    But the Red Devils boss says that even if they don’t win either that a second placed league finish will be real evidence they are on the right track.

    Solskjaer said: “We are 12 points ahead of what we were at the same time in the league last season, of course we’re aiming to win trophies but as we’ve said sometimes a trophy can hide the other fact of what’s happening at the club.

    “In the league position you see if you’re progressing really and sometimes in the cup tournaments you might be lucky or unlucky with draws, games decided on different factors.

    “In the league position you see if there’s any progress for me, that’s always the bread and butter of the season, that you see how capable you are of coping with ups and downs.

    “Any cup competition can give you a trophy but sometimes it’s more of an ego thing from other managers and clubs to finally win something.

    “But we need to see progress and if we perform well enough the trophies will end up at the club again. It’s not like a trophy will say that we’re back, no."

  • Ian Tuckey

    UTD COMPILE TARGET LIST

    United are reportedly already lining up summer targets as they plan for a long-term future under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

    The Red Devils announced a new recruitment team of football director John Murtough and ex-midfielder Darren Fletcher as technical director last week.

    Murtough and Fletcher are heading up Manchester United's recruitment

    The Telegraph reports the duo have begun work on an end-of-season shortlist with the club targeting a centre-back, right-winger and young central midfielder.

    Solskjaer is set to pen a new £9million-a-year-deal at Old Trafford with just over a year left on his current contract.

    The Norwegian, 48, was given the job on a permanent basis in March 2019, having replaced Jose Mourinho in the hot seat.

    After Solskjaer orchestrated a 2-0 derby win over league leaders Manchester City, club chief Ed Woodward said: "The progress made by Ole and the players this season is clear. He is adding to the optimism we feel about the future on and off the pitch.”

    And United are set to throw their weight behind the manager by giving the former super sub a £2m pay rise and final say on their transfer targets.

  • Ian Tuckey

    POGBA, DE GEA FIT TO RETURN

    David de Gea and Paul Pogba are fit to return for United's Europa League last-16 away tie with AC Milan following the 1-1 first leg draw.

    But striker Edinson Cavani misses out after initial hopes he would make it.

    And despite De Gea's availability, Dean Henderson will hope to keep his place.

    Midfielder Paul Pogba and keeper David de Gea are available for United against AC MilanCredit: PA
  • Ian Tuckey

    RON HEADING BACK TO OLD TRAFFORD?

    Cristiano Ronaldo returning to Manchester United is looking more likely than Real Madrid, reports in Italy suggest.

    The Spanish side are claimed to have given up on bringing Ronaldo back and instead are focussing their attentions on landing Kylian Mbappe.

    And Tuttosport claim Old Trafford is a more viable option than the Bernabeu

    Ronaldo, 36, spent six years at United before nine seasons at Real.

    He joined Serie A champions Juventus in 2018 but could be forced to leave this summer with the club facing a financial crisis.

  • Ian Tuckey

    UTD EYE PEDRO AS SANCHO ALTERNATIVE

    Man Utd are reportedly targeting Sporting Lisbon’s Pedro Goncalves as a half-price alternative to signing Jadon Sancho.

    Sporting signed Wolves flop Goncalves in August to fill the void left by Bruno Fernandes’ departure to Old Trafford in January 2020.

    And the 22-year-old has bagged 15 goals in just 21 appearances to fire Sporting to the verge of their first league crown for 19 years.

    The Telegraph reports United are looking at Goncalves as a cheaper right-sided forward than last year’s No1 target Sancho.

    Goncalves’ super form has alerted a number of European giants to his availability for £51.7million, thanks to a buyout clause.

    The latest reports from Germany suggest Borussia Dortmund would be willing to sell Sancho, 20, for around £104m this summer.

  • Jake Lambourne

    MARC MY WORDS

    Marcus Rashford is determined to play through the pain barrier and delay a shoulder operation until after the Euros.

    He said: “To be honest I just focus on the next game at hand and that’s just the way I deal with it. What’s needed after we will deal with that. My main focus is just being available for the games.”

    Rashford has missed only one of United’s 45 games this season but the 23-year-old insists he is not at risk of burnout and that time for a rest will come when he is retired.

    The striker added: “I know my body and I know what I can do physically and that’s it. I take one game at a time it’s the life of a footballer, we can rest when we retire and for now I’m happy playing as many games as I can.

    "I recover from games quite well and from injuries well, I have no doubts or fears.”

  • Jake Lambourne

    OLE TRAFFORD

    Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says trophies are for egos and it is the league which shows real progress for a team.

    He said: “We are 12 points ahead of what we were at the same time in the league last season, of course we’re aiming to win trophies but as we’ve said sometimes a trophy can hide the other fact of what’s happening at the club.

    “In the league position you see if you’re progressing really and sometimes in the cup tournaments you might be lucky or unlucky with draws, games decided on different factors.

    “In the league position you see if there’s any progress for me, that’s always the bread and butter of the season, that you see how capable you are of coping with ups and downs.

    “Any cup competition can give you a trophy but sometimes it’s more of an ego thing from other managers and clubs to finally win something.

    “But we need to see progress and if we perform well enough the trophies will end up at the club again. It’s not like a trophy will say that we’re back, no."

  • Jake Lambourne

    SCOT OF BOTHER

    Former Crystal Palace chairman Simon Jordan believes England's U21 team can beat Scotland's first XI and Mason Greenwood is better than any of their players.

    The outspoken pundit was reacting to Che Adams being called up for Scotland.

    Jordan told talkSPORT: "What are you thinking? Do you really want to be part of that debacle of Scotland at the Euros?!

    “He’s thinking, ‘where am I guaranteed to play because the quality is so low that I’ll get in every time the squad is picked’?

    “I’m not disrespectful about Scotland, I’m honest. I’ve said before that England Under-21s could beat Scotland’s first team, and I don’t climb down from that.

    “Look at the quality of our U21s, I think that is genuinely true. Mason Greenwood is better than anything you’ve got in your first XI, better than anything in the Scotland team!”

    England's U21 team have an embarrassment of riches
  • Jake Lambourne

    EUR IN LUCK

    Man Utd are looking to win their second Europa League in four years.

    However they must score against AC Milan at the San Siro to stand any chance of qualifying for the quarter-final stages.

  • Jake Lambourne

    DOUBLE JOY

    Man Utd have received a huge boost as Paul Pogba and Edinson Cavani both returned to training yesterday.

    The Red Devils face a crucial few days as they travel to AC Milan with the score tied at 1-1 for the second-leg of their Europa League last-16 clash on Thursday.

    And then they travel to Leicester City for an FA Cup quarter-final on Sunday as they aim to end the season with silverware – as well as Champions League qualification.

    Now they have received some positive news on two fronts as both stars took part in this morning’s session at Carrington.

    Paul Pogba and Edinson Cavano are in contention to face AC Milan on Thursday
  • Jake Lambourne

    T-EDEN PROJECT

    Man Utd starlet Teden Mengi has signed a new three-year deal at the club until June 2024.

    The 18-year-old defender made his senior debut in the Europa League last season.

    Mengi was promoted to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's first-team squad at the start of this season.

    He joined Wayne Rooney's Derby in January to gain more experience after playing ten times for the Red Devils' Under-23s in the first half of the season.

    Mengi has already starred six times for Rooney's Rams.

    The young centre-back has been at Old Trafford since the age of seven, coming through the academy and captaining age group sides through the ranks.

    Teden Mengi has extended his deal at Manchester United
  • Jake Lambourne

    HURTS A SCOTT

    Scott McTominay conceded it’s hard to look at the Premier League table and not feel title regret.

    McTominay and Co had title aspirations at the turn of the year before seeing Manchester City pull clear.

    The Red Devils are 14 points adrift of Pep Guardiola’s men and looking just to seal a top-four spot.

    The midfielder said: “It’s difficult to look at top four at the minute because we had a time when we were looking at the league.

    “It was the chance for all of us to have a big push and show really what good players we are.

    “But Man City have had a terrific run of games and we’re just trying our best to keep on them.”

  • Jake Lambourne

    TOP PHWOAR

    The Premier League season is racing towards what should be a thrilling finale.

    While Manchester City are almost-certain to be crowned champions there is still plenty to play for at both ends of the table.

    But above all, the race for the top-four looks set to go down to the wire.

    Incredibly, should all teams win their games in hand, there are just 13 points separating second from TENTH.

    But who will grab those all-important places? We take a look at each club’s run-in to determine who will make the cut…

  • Jake Lambourne

    RETURN OF THE KING

    Cristiano Ronaldo returning to Manchester United is looking more likely than Real Madrid, according to reports.

    The Spanish side are claimed to have given up on bringing Ronaldo back and instead are focussing their attentions on landing Kylian Mbappe.

    And Tuttosport in Italy report that Man Utd is looking the more viable option than Real Madrid.

    Ronaldo, 36, spent six years at Old Trafford before nine seasons at Real Madrid.

    He joined Serie A champions Juventus in 2018 but could be forced to leave this summer with the club facing a financial crisis.

  • Jake Lambourne

    NEW BRU

    Man Utd are reportedly targeting Sporting Lisbon's Pedro Goncalves as a half-price alternative to signing Jadon Sancho.

    Sporting signed Wolves flop Goncalves in August to fill the void left by Bruno Fernandes' departure to Old Trafford in January 2020.

    And the 22-year-old has bagged 15 goals in just 21 appearances to fire Sporting to the verge of their first league crown for 19 years.

    The Telegraph reports United are looking at Goncalves as a cheaper right-sided forward than last year's No1 target Sancho.

    Goncalves' super form has alerted a number of European giants to his availability for £51.7million, thanks to a buyout clause.

    The latest reports from Germany suggest Borussia Dortmund would be willing to sell Sancho, 20, for around £104m this summer.

    Manchester United are lining up Sporting Lisbon's Pedro Goncalves

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