Manchester United to hijack Arsenal summer transfer plan: report

Manchester United and Arsenal managers Erik ten Hag and Mikel Arteta look on during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Arsenal FC at Old Trafford on September 04, 2022 in Manchester, England.
(Image credit: Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Manchester United could spoil an Arsenal summer transfer, by toppling a couple of dominoes of their own.

United have recent history when it comes to foiling the north Londoners, with fans of both sides seeing the other club as significant rivals, given that the pair fought against one another for titles in the era of Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson. Last summer, Manchester United and Arsenal went head-to-head over the signing of Lisandro Martinez, with the Red Devils winning the battle.

This season, the two teams have reignited their rivalry, as Erik ten Hag and Mikel Arteta look to restore their respective teams back to their former glory. Now, United could get one over their rivals once more by scuppering their plans in the transfer market again and leave them scrambling for another Plan B. 

Lisandro Martinez of Manchester United during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Brighton & Hove Albion at Old Trafford on August 07, 2022 in Manchester, England

Manchester United pipped Arsenal to Lisandro Martinez, now they could put a spanner in their transfer plans again (Image credit: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

According to German outlet Kicker (opens in new tab), United are looking to sign Jeremie Frimpong from Bayer Leverkusen, as Ten Hag strengthens his squad with a right-back capable of providing competition to Diogo Dalot.

This would have a direct knock-on effect at the Emirates Stadium, however. Frimpong's exit would leave the Bundesliga side looking to recruit Ivan Fresneda – a target for the Gunners in January. 

Ultimately, Fresneda's agent revealed that a £13 million move was postponed (opens in new tab) to allow the 18-year-old to continue his development – but he called Arsenal a “big club”.

“Fresneda will be at Real Valladolid until the end of the season,” Luis Bardaji told AS (opens in new tab). “We want him to have his feet on the ground and in other teams, he was not going to have the continuity he needs now.”

Ivan Fresneda

Ivan Fresneda has attracted interest from a number of top clubs around Europe (Image credit: Getty)

While Fresneda is a midfielder-like full-back compared to the likes of Oleksandr Zinchenko, Frimpong is more of a winger-type. The Dutchman has played down the right wing for Leverkusen in the past and would be the kind of full-back who could allow the likes of Antony to cut inside a little more and drift centrally. 

Frimpong is valued at €25 million by Transfermarkt (opens in new tab)

More Arsenal and Manchester United stories

Formal bids are set to be submitted to buy United. The club had a quiet January window but brought in Marcel Sabitzer on deadline day after Christian Eriksen picked up a long-term injury.

Arsenal look like investing well this summer, according to reports. Interest in Declan Rice is ramping up – and the Gunners may have to break their transfer record for him – while Folarin Balogun's form on loan is posing interesting questions for Arteta

Meanwhile, Glen Johnson has stated that Arsenal's success is temporary

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Mark White
Staff Writer

Mark White has been a staff writer on FourFourTwo since joining in January 2020, writing pieces for both online and the magazine. An encyclopedia of football shirts and boots knowledge – both past and present – Mark has also been to the FA Cup and League Cup finals for FFT and has written pieces for the mag ranging on subjects from Bobby Robson's season at Barcelona to Robinho's career. He once saw Tyrone Mings at a petrol station in Bournemouth but felt far too short to ask for a photo.