Reports suggest that Manchester United is actively pursuing Real Sociedad’s attacker, Takefusa Kubo, and is considering a potential deal that involves offering Antony to facilitate the move, as per information from the Sun.
Antony, acquired by the Red Devils from Ajax for £85 million last summer, has struggled to make a significant impact, recording no goals or assists in 18 appearances across all competitions this season.
In light of this, Manchester United’s manager, Erik ten Hag, is exploring options for a replacement, with Kubo emerging as a prime target.
Scouts from Manchester United have reportedly observed Kubo on at least seven occasions this season, including during Real Betis’ recent goalless draw, where the 22-year-old Japan international was named Player of the Match.
A La Masia graduate, Kubo initially moved to Real Madrid in 2019 and subsequently joined Real Sociedad last summer following loan spells at Mallorca, Villarreal, and Getafe.
In the current season, he has showcased his talent by creating 31 chances, scoring six goals, and providing three assists in 16 league games.
Barcelona’s manager, Xavi, expressed admiration for Kubo, labeling him a ‘world-class’ player after a recent encounter between the two clubs.
While Kubo is under contract with Real Sociedad until 2027, the club is reportedly open to a transfer fee in the vicinity of £43 million.
Manchester United is contemplating an offer that could include loaning Antony as part of the agreement to secure Kubo.
However, the competition for Kubo’s signature is expected to be fierce, with Manchester United, among other suitors, needing to secure a spot in the Champions League next season to enhance their appeal.
Napoli reportedly made a £26 million bid for Kubo’s services in the summer, indicating the player’s recognition as a highly sought-after talent across Europe.