Manchester United are reportedly planning a swoop for Turkish starlet Ozan Kabak, who is also a target for fellow Premier League outfit Arsenal.
Manchester United and Arsenal are poised to battle it out for the signing of Galatasaray’s 18-year-old centre-back Ozan Kabak, as per a report from the Daily Mail.
An exponent of the Galatasaray youth academy, Kabak came through the ranks at the club and broke into the senior team in the ongoing campaign. And, in his debut season with the first-team, the defender has established himself as a mainstay in Fatih Terim’s side.
So far in the 2018-19 term, Kabak has featured 16 times for the Turkish heavyweights, including four times in the UEFA Champions League as well. And, his performances at the top level have earned rave reviews, with a number of teams across Europe casting admiring glances towards the teenage wonderkid, including Manchester United and Arsenal.
Manchester United’s defensive woes in the ongoing campaign are very well-documented. The club are going through a bit of a crisis at the moment, and having sacked Jose Mourinho, the 20-time English champions will be hoping that things take a turn for the better under caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
While there may have been a regime change at the club, Manchester United remain intent on strengthening their defensive ranks in the January transfer window. To that end, the Red Devils have identified Fiorentina’s Nikola Milenkovic as a potential target.
A whopping £100 million move for Napoli superstar Kalidou Koulibaly had been mooted as well. But, Manchester United remain interested in the services of the 18-year-old Kabak. The Galatasaray starlet is valued in the range of £20 million by his club, but is reported to have a £6.7 million release clause in his contract, which United are hoping to trigger to sign him up.
Arsenal, too, are mulling over launching an offer for the Turkey Under-18 international. The Gunners have a number of options in their defence, with the likes of Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Shkodran Mustafi, Rob Holding and Konstantinos Mavropanos, along with captain Laurent Koscielny and Calum Chambers, who is currently on loan at Fulham.
However, amid concerns over the long-term future of Koscielny at the club, the North Londoners are seemingly looking ahead and have identified Kabak as someone who could be a first-team member in the near future.
Manchester United and Arsenal are not the only two clubs taking an interest in the 18-year-old though, with reigning Premier League champions Manchester City, Serie A bigwigs Inter Milan and AS Roma also monitoring the teenager.
Kabak’s contract with Galatasaray runs till the summer of 2020, but the club are keen on holding on to their prized asset and to that end, are believed to have offered a new five-year deal. It remains to be seen how this story unfolds, but a big move away from Turkey in the near future seems to be on the cards for the young and talented Kabak.