Manchester United snubbed a chance to sign Ajax star Donny van de Beek in the summer and have ceded interest in him, leaving Real Madrid as the favourites.

According to a report from the Mirror, Premier League heavyweights Manchester United rejected the opportunity to sign Ajax and Netherlands midfielder Donny van de Beek in the summer transfer window and have ended their interest in the 22-year-old, leaving Real Madrid as the front-runners to sign him.

A product of the Ajax youth academy, van de Beek has grown into one of the most sought-after attacking midfielders across Europe over the past couple of seasons. The 22-year-old broke into the Ajax senior team in 2015 and has racked up 150 appearances so far.

Donny van de Beek enjoyed a spectacular 2018-19 campaign that saw him score 17 goals and assist 13 more in 57 appearances across all competitions, helping Ajax to a domestic double and a semi-final run in the UEFA Champions League. Naturally, the Dutchman garnered a lot of attention from major clubs that included Manchester United and Real Madrid.

Manchester United were in search of an attacking midfielder all summer as manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wanted to add another creative presence to his midfield department. And, van de Beek was one of the club’s targets, along with Portuguese international Bruno Fernandes.

Manchester United snubbed a chance to sign Donny van de Beek (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)

Manchester United snubbed a chance to sign Donny van de Beek (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)

As per the report, the 20-time English champions had the chance to land the 22-year-old Netherlands international for just £35 million, which would have been a steal in the current state of the transfer market. However, Manchester United snubbed the opportunity to sign him after they decided to not to let go of Paul Pogba, who was attracting interest from Real Madrid and Juventus.

Having backed out of a deal to sign van de Beek in the summer, Manchester United have now seen Ajax increase their valuation of their midfield superstar to £100 million – nearly triple of what the Red Devils could have signed him for, leading to them ending their interest in the 22-year-old.

This has left the field open for Real Madrid to sign the five-time capped Netherlands international. The current La Liga leaders are reportedly not baulking at the new inflated transfer fee and want to launch another attempt to land the midfielder next summer.

van de Beek has started the 2019-20 campaign on a strong note and has already bagged 3 goals and 6 assists 12 matches in all competitions. Given Manchester United’s struggles this term – they are 12th in the Premier League table, just two points above the relegation zone – they could have certainly used someone of the Ajax midfielder’s ilk in their squad.

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