Borussia Dortmund defender Manuel Akanji reveals Man United ambition

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Manuel Akanji needs to come clutch for Dortmund.

Borussia Dortmund centre-back Manuel Akanji has revealed his ambition to play for Manchester United.

The 23-year-old was linked with the Red Devils in January, before joining the current Bundesliga leaders in the same window in a £23million transfer.

Akanji has impressed in his time with the German giants, and there has been plenty of speculation linking him with a move to one of Europe’s biggest clubs for the next step of his career.

The Swiss international says he hopes any transfer takes him to United, who have been looking for defensive reinforcements, though he has four-and-a-half years left on his current Dortmund contract, which would make a move difficult.

“Many know that Manchester United has been my favourite club since childhood,” Akanji told Bluewin. It would be nice to play there, but that’s not an issue right now.

“I am very satisfied in Dortmund. I want to win titles with BVB and compete in many more big tournaments with the Swiss national team.”

“I always want to go higher, as far as possible. But planning the future is difficult. You never know what will happen.

“The most important thing is to stay healthy. The short-term goal for the club is to consolidate in the Champions League and to continue playing well in the Bundesliga.

“There will be setbacks along the way. Life does not always go upwards, but also downwards, not just in football. I will try to be a good person on and off the field.”

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Borussia Dortmund reportedly set to sign Paco Alcacer on a permanent basis

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Alcacer has been in fine goal-scoring form this season.

Spain forward Paco Alcacer’s loan move to Borussia Dortmund is set to become a permanent one with the Bundesliga outfit reportedly deciding to trigger the purchase clause.

According to a report by Bild, Dortmund will exercise the option to purchase the striker for €23 million after being given the go ahead by Alcacer.

The former Valencia forward spent two seasons at Barcelona but found game time had to come by with the intense competitions for places.

He made the loan love to Dortmund this summer and has enjoyed a fine start to life in the Bundesliga.

The Spaniard has already banged in seven goals in four games for the club including a hat-trick against Augsburg in his side’s most recent Bundesliga clash.

The striker continued his prolific form on international duty with Spain too, chipping in with two goals in the clash against Wales on Thursday.

Alcacer bagged two goals against Wales on Thursday.

Alcacer bagged two goals against Wales on Thursday.

In two seasons with Barcelona, Alcacer scored 15 goals across 50 appearances. He recently spoke about his unhappiness at the Catalan club.

“I decided to look for minutes away from Barcelona. After having two years with Barcelona and not playing an important role, not everything went as I’d hoped,” the 25-year-old had told Marca.

“I’m happy now, in the end it comes down to decision making.”

Alcacer’s permanent deal with Dortmund could reportedly tie the striker down to the club until 2023.

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Barcelona targeting Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt

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Matthijs de Ligt

Barcelona have begun laying the groundwork for a bid for Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt, according to Mundo Deportivo.

The 19-year-old Dutch international has been on Barca’s radar for a long time, having consolidated his spot as Ajax’s starting centre-back during the 2016/17 season, which culminated with an appearance in the Europa League final against Manchester United.

De Ligt has reportedly already informed the Catalan club of his desire to join them, and the club are said to be equally impressed by the young Dutchman.

Midfielder Frenkie de Jong, De Ligt’s team-mate for both club and country, has also been a long-term target for Barcelona. But the club are said to be prioritising signing the defender, given Gerard Pique’s struggles to start this season.

De Ligt is represented by Mino Raiola, who is also the agent of rumoured Barca target Paul Pogba, and the controversial figure will be central in any transfer negotiations between Ajax and the La Liga champions.

The market for centre-backs has also been inflated by the transfer of De Ligt’s fellow Dutch defender, for whom Liverpool paid Southampton £75 million in January, and the price may become a sticking point for Barcelona.

However, their need for defensive reinforcements may force their hand.

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