Date: 4th August 2023 at 1:21pm
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Manchester United continue their pre-season preparations with a friendly against French side Lens on Saturday. 

The Red Devils have so far endured a mixed summer, winning three and losing three of their games as Erik ten Hag prepares for his second season in charge.

United have been boosted by the arrivals of Mason Mount and Andre Onana this summer, and will therefore be hoping to improve on their fourth-placed finish in the Premier League table last term.

Now, it seems that the Manchester outfit are hoping to sign a new central defender.

According to Football Insider, United have been quoted £25 million for Everton defender Jarrad Branthwaite.

The 21-year-old joined the Toffees from Carlisle United back in 2020 and has since spent time on loan at both Blackburn Rovers and PSV Eindhoven.

In total, Branthwaite has made just 13 senior appearances for Everton, but it appears that he has attracted interest from elsewhere.

Branthwaite has reportedly attracted interest from Manchester United

The report claims that United are interested in the England under-21 international as they look to bolster Ten Hag’s defensive options.

Branthwaite is said to be keen on leaving Goodison Park during the current transfer window, and the Englishman has therefore emerged as a potential target for United as they look for a new left-sided centre-back.

United’s desire to sign a new defender stems from the uncertainty surrounding Harry Maguire’s future at the club.

The ex-Leicester City man was stripped of the captaincy last month after falling out of favour last term, and speculation continues to link him with a departure from Old Trafford.

Last term the youngster made 37 appearances across all competitions for Dutch side PSV as they finished second in the Eredivisie table behind Feyenoord.

Surprisingly, Everton are claimed to have raised the defender’s price tag considerably in the past few months.

The report suggests that the Toffees valued Branthwaite at just £6 million a matter of months ago, but have now raised that figure to £25 million,  much to the surprise of United.

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