Manchester United and Manchester City have reportedly joined Barcelona in the race to sign RB Leipzig and Spain attacking midfielder Dani Olmo.
According to SPORT Bild’s Christian Falk, Manchester United and Manchester City have entered the race to sign Spanish playmaker Dani Olmo from RB Leipzig and will make a move for him if Barcelona are unable to afford his signing.
Olmo spent seven years at Barcelona’s fabled La Masia youth academy between 2007 and 2014 before deciding to leave the club for Croatian giants Dinamo Zagreb. The move worked out well for the 23-year-old as he soon became one of the most coveted young attacking midfielders in Europe, after impressing in Croatia.
RB Leipzig moved swiftly to snap up his signing in January last year and Olmo has since become an integral part of the Bundesliga outfit. To date, the versatile attacking midfielder, who can play out wide on the flanks or as a false nine, has racked up 64 appearances for the Saxony-based outfit, bagging 12 goals and 14 assists in the process.
Olmo has also established a foothold in the Spanish national team and was one of their star performers at the UEFA Euro 2020 earlier this summer. The 23-year-old’s rapid rise to stardom has not gone unnoticed with boyhood club Barcelona now keen on re-signing him. Indeed, the Catalans held talks with Leipzig over a move for him late in the summer, but nothing materialised.
However, Barcelona have been planning to make a swoop for Olmo in the new year, either in January or in the summer window. Considering how over-reliant they have become on youngsters like Pedri and Gavi in midfield and the lack of quality options out wide beyond Ansu Fati and Memphis Depay, signing someone like the RB Leipzig star would certainly be a good move.
But, Barcelona’s problematic financial situation makes it difficult for them to make a swoop for the 23-year-old, leaving the door open for other clubs to capitalise and sign Olmo up, which is exactly what Manchester United and Manchester City are reportedly planning to do, as per the update from Christian Falk.
The interest from both the Manchester clubs comes as puzzling given the plethora of attacking talents at their disposal. Indeed, Manchester City added Jack Grealish to their already loaded attacking unit that has the likes of Riyad Mahrez, Bernardo Silva, Raheem Sterling, Phil Foden, Ferran Torres among others.
However, with there being question marks over the futures of both Sterling and Silva, a spot could open up for someone like Olmo to come in and nail a spot at the Etihad. As for Manchester United, they have Bruno Fernandes as their undisputed No. 10, while the likes of Jesse Lingard, Donny van de Beek and Juan Mata provide cover.
Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, Mason Greenwood, Jadon Sancho, Amad Diallo and Anthony Elanga are all options for the wide areas, meaning Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is well-stocked. However, both Lingard and Mata are out of contract at the end of the season and are likely to leave in search of regular game-time while van de Beek is also being linked with an exit.
Such a situation would warrant a move for Olmo in the summer next year. The midfielder, however, dreams of a return to Barcelona. So, it remains to be seen where the 22-year-old ends up come 2022.