The Erik ten Hag regime at Manchester United finally nears its official lift-off date under the Dutch tactician with recent reports suggesting that a completed deal for Frenkie de Jong is around the corner.
United and Barcelona are said to be closer than ever to finalizing terms for the Dutch international midfielder after reaching a broad agreement over the 25-year-old, but what is even more telling this summer is the manner in which the Red Devils intend to clear the decks of a large handful of first-team assets from the previous regime(s).
There was already an exodus of sorts this summer before Ten Hag even sunk his teeth into the squad at Old Trafford after Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matić, Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata, and Edinson Cavani all departed on free transfers, but now it is being reported by Goal's James Robson that a further nine players could be jettisoned as a full-on culling could be on the cards.
Per Robson's report, Ten Hag is determined to bring in up to five new signings this summer - including De Jong - with the intention of trimming the fat left in the wake of both Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjær, with many left-over from previous tenures at risk of being pushed out of the door.
As it stands, center-back pair Phil Jones and Eric Bailly are free to find new avenues of employment elsewhere this summer as United remain bloated in the center of defense.
With links to AFC Ajax's Lisandro Martínez persisting as one of the potential new faces to arrive under Ten Hag, room in the team must be made considering United boast seven central defenders at the time of writing.
Additionally, England international right-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka and French winger Anthony Martial will also come under the microscope and will have to seriously impress their new headmaster if they are to extend their stay at the Theatre of Dreams.
Given that Ten Hag is also pushing for deals for Ajax forward Antony, Villarreal center-back Pau Torres, Feyenoord Rotterdam's Tyrell Malacia, and potentially Inter Milan's Denzel Dumfries, other players set to be sold - or potentially moved on - include Alex Telles, Axel Tuanzebe, Andreas Pereira, Brandon Williams, and Dean Henderson.
Considering that pre-season is already officially underway, United will have to move quickly if they are to achieve the type of player movement - both in and out - that they hope will give Ten Hag the platform to pull the Red Devils back into the top-four discussion in the Premier League.
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