Man Utd to partner Ten Hag with mastermind of Napoli title success as chief prepares for glorious new challenge; Tottenham, Chelsea also interested

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Erik ten Hag, Manchester United, April 2023 Credit: Alamy
Erik ten Hag, Manchester United, April 2023 Credit: Alamy

Manchester United could get back to the summit of English football by appointing a masterful new sporting director who has just helped Napoli to win the Serie A title, according to a report.

Man Utd last won the Premier League crown in 2012-13, during Sir Alex Ferguson’s final season in management. They have won trophies such as the Europa League, FA Cup and League Cup since then, although no Man Utd boss has been able to replicate Fergie by winning the Prem.

Red Devils supporters will be hoping Erik ten Hag is the man that can get them back to that top level. The Dutchman has done well during his first season at Old Trafford, helping Man Utd win the League Cup, reach the FA Cup final and put themselves in a good position to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

Ten Hag has the expertise to get the best out of the Man Utd squad, while the club has the money to back him with some world-class signings. That will especially be the case if either Sir Jim Ratcliffe or Sheikh Jassim buy Man Utd from the Glazers.

The final piece in the puzzle for Man Utd to get back ahead of rivals Manchester City could be them finding an excellent sporting director. And according to Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, Cristiano Giuntoli of Napoli could be their man.

Giuntoli left Carpi to become Napoli’s sporting director in 2015. Since then, he has helped the club to win a Coppa Italia in 2019-20 and this season’s Serie A title.

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Giuntoli played a big role in the signings of Victor Osimhen, Khvicha Kvaratskhelia and Kim Min-jae, all three of whom have been integral to Napoli’s league success.

However, the Italian is expected to depart the Diego Armando Maradona stadium this summer. His contract runs until June 2024, but it is thought he wants to leave a year early so he can take part in an exciting new challenge.

Man Utd want transformative new club chief

Gazzetta dello Sport reveal that Man Utd have been hugely impressed by Giuntoli’s work in Naples and want him to work wonders for them next. They are drawing up a lucrative proposal to take the club chief to Manchester.

If such a move were to go through, then Giuntoli would work alongside Ten Hag to help the manager obtain his primary transfer targets.

Given Giuntoli’s extensive connections with Napoli, he could help Man Utd win the race for deadly striker Osimhen.

However, Man Utd are far from being the only club to strike up an interest in the 51-year-old. English rivals Tottenham and Chelsea are also delighted by the fact Giuntoli will likely become a free agent this summer and could send him offers of their own.

In addition, Man Utd will face competition from Juventus for the transfer specialist. Juve owner John Elkann recently confirmed his team are looking at making Giuntoli their next director of football.

Giuntoli is in a brilliant position as things stand. He can choose to stay in Italy and join the country’s most successful team in the form of Juve, or he can head to England, currently the most powerful league in Europe. It would be fantastic to see Giuntoli come to the Prem as he could help one of Man Utd, Spurs or Chelsea bring in some top Serie A players.

Meanwhile, Man Utd are reportedly nearing a final verdict on Mason Greenwood’s future, with the attacker being offered contracts by six different teams.

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