Recent reports had claimed Ajax winger Antony would become the first signing for new Manchester United manager Erik Ten Hag. However, those rumours have been termed as “fake news” by the player’s brother but the English giants still retain a firm interest in the Brazilian.
Recently, a quote attributed to his so-called agent Emerson Santos appeared on geglobo, a Brazilian outlet, which stated that the Brazil international was desperate to make the move to Old Trafford.
The quote read, “Manchester United is pushing very hard get get Antony in these hours. They’re so determined and Antony wants this move to happen for his career.”
However, as it turned out, the quote was a fake one and the person in question (Santos) is actually Antony’s brother and not his agent. Sport Witness were the first to debunk the authenticity of the comments.
There are no comments from Antony’s agent on @geglobo.
— Lucas Sposito (@LucasSposito_) June 13, 2022
Then prominent journalist Fabrizio Romano further clarified the situation. The Italian revealed that Santos has denied ever making such statements, terming the news as ‘fake’.
However, Romano also added that Ten Hag, who knows the 22-year-old from their time together at Ajax, is interested in the attacker with internal discussions already taking place at the club but the deal is far from done.
Reports in Brazil had recently claimed that United had bid £38.4m to sign the skilled winger but it will take a lot more if Ajax are to be forced to part with him.
Manchester United have genuine interest in Antony, of course Erik ten Hag knows him so well – still no bid, just internal discussions. 🇧🇷 #MUFC
…but Emerson Santos [he’s Antony’s brother, not agent] has not made any interview speaking of Man United. He denies – ‘fake news’. pic.twitter.com/DxAjSIqXud
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) June 13, 2022
The Brazilian ace has shone since signing for the Dutch champions back in 2020 from Sao Paulo. He scored 12 and assisted a further 10 goals in 33 appearances last season. He has won won two Eredivise titles along with a Dutch Cup during his Netherlands stint while impressing in the Champions League as well.
The admiration between the pair is mutual. Antony has gone on record praising the Dutch manager’s style of coaching which helps improve a player’s ability. “Every player under his guidance becomes a better player thanks to his training. Ten Hag wants to do everything to make their team play well. He has many qualities, he knows how to improve the players he coaches,” Antony had told De Telegraaf last season.
Ten Hag is a known admirer of the Brazilian’s talents and even went on to say that he was one of the players who would be irreplaceable should Ajax lose him.
“If Antony were to go, it would be a loss for Ajax. You have no-one in the current squad who can take over his position. He is top class,” the current United boss had said while he was still a part of Ajax.
Ten Hag seems to have a clear blueprint in mind with interest shown in Barcelona midfielder Frenkie De Jong and now Antony. Now it is up to the English giants to help secure all of the Dutchman’s top targets so that the club can make a swift comeback to the Champions League places at the very least next season.