Manchester United strike £84m deal to buy winger Antony from Ajax

Sport

Manchester United are poised to buy Antony after agreeing to pay Ajax €100m (£84m) for the Brazil forward, who is expected to sign a contract on Monday.

Last week the Dutch club rejected an offer of €90m – United’s third bid for the 22-year-old – but talks have continued in recent days and United made a breakthrough on Sunday after a smooth series of discussions. Antony is understood to have agreed a deal to 2027 with an option for a further year.

The final part of negotiations focused on the structure of the deal, with Ajax settling for a guaranteed €95m plus €5m in add-ons. Antony is set to become Erik ten Hag’s fifth summer signing and the second-most expensive transfer in United’s history behind Paul Pogba. It will be the largest fee received by a Dutch club.

Alfred Schreuder, the Ajax manager, insisted on Thursday that he was confident Antony – who has 31 goals in 134 appearances since joining from São Paulo in 2020 for an initial £13m – would not leave in this window. Asked whether that had changed after his side’s 2-0 win against Utrecht on Sunday, Schreuder said: “I stick to those words. I want to talk about the game, not about Antony. I have said more than enough about this.”

He added: “Everything is about money … I think this is sad. But this is our world, it’s very sad and I don’t approve of these things at all.”

Ten Hag wants the Brazilian to strengthen his striking options. The manager has Jadon Sancho, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Elanga, Anthony Martial and Cristiano Ronaldo.

United have spent more than £100m during this window on Lisandro Martínez, Tyrell Malacia and Casemiro, and it would be a surprise if Antony were not the final signing.

The fee for Antony surpasses the £80m United paid Leicester to sign Harry Maguire in July 2019 but falls short of the £93.2m spent on Pogba in August 2016.