In an exclusive interview with Fabrizio Romano, Antony announced that Ajax refused to sell him to Manchester United, citing “that they only have five days to replace me” as the reason. The Red Devils have seen bid after bid rejected, including the most recent offer of £76.3 million, in their hunt for the Brazilian winger, although personal terms are agreed.
Ajax ‘Refused’ to Sell Antony; How Likely Is He to Join This Summer?
▫️ What happened today, Friday?
▪️ Excl. Antony: "Today, in a meeting with the club, I expressed my old interest in leaving, only this time with a considerable offer on the table. Others had already arrived! Ajax refused with argument that they only have 5 days to replace me". pic.twitter.com/QOTU4UuAqo
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) August 26, 2022
Why Have Ajax Refused to Sell Antony?
The reason Antony cited for the Amsterdam club refusing the sale is the lack of time to identify and bring in a replacement player. Replacing players is difficult at the best of times, but doing so right at the end of a transfer window is even harder. There are fewer players available, which drives prices up and that would be combined with the fact that clubs would know the amount of money Ajax have in their budget. Put simply, selling now is damaging to Alfred Schreuder’s squad and harms the side’s chances in the Champions League.
Does Antony Want the Move?
The Brazilian winger does want the move. In the interview, he stated that: “I’m asking Ajax to sell me with the highest bid ever for Eredivisie player“, and that he has been pushing for the move for six months. Meanwhile, there is already a long-term deal in place once the two clubs agree on a fee. As a candidate for Brazil’s World Cup side, half a season in the Premier League provides an ideal stage for the versatile forward to show off his craft.
Is a Move Likely?
The hierarchy at the Johann Cruyff Arena wants to keep the player. However, there’s only so long they can do so. Since the player is so committed to the move (in spite of the fact Ajax refused to sell him), his presence risks ruining the squad cohesion at the club, and you can expect suboptimal performances from him.
Ultimately, this interview is simply likely to drive Antony’s price up, as the “Come and get me” plea plays out across the streets of Manchester to the winger’s future adoring fans.