- Olise is admired by many clubs while Everton value Branthwaite around £100m
- Ratcliffe wants a more data-focused transfer policy, leaning less on Ten Hag
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Ratcliffe wants to chase a younger age profile and use a data-led approach, as is the case in his other sporting pursuits with INEOS.
Ten Hag is used to considerable sway over transfers, with the club landing his former Ajax players Antony and Andre Onana during his tenure.
However Ratciffe – who completed his £1.3billion buy-out of a 25 per cent stake in the club in December – wants to transform football operations.
The i reports that Olise and Branthwaite are on United’s radar and that Ratcliffe has already met with the club’s data boffins with the aim of building ‘the best data platform in sport’.
Manchester United will reportedly target Michael Olise and Jarrad Branthwaite in the summer
Sir Jim Ratcliffe is keen to overhaul United’s transfer policy, with more focus on youth and data
United have already poached Omar Berrada from Manchester City to be their new CEO and director of data science Dominic Jordan, who inaugurated the role in 2022, said he expects his field to be ‘transformational’ for the side.
A source told the i: ‘Data is part of the DNA at Ineos so it’s no surprise it’s going to be a big part of what they do at Manchester United.’
It is clear that current United’s transfer approach, which often fits the preferences and allegiances of Ten Hag, has largely been a disaster.
The club signed Antony for £85.5m in August 2022, forking out £81.3m of that up-front, and that has amounted to nine goals in 69 games – or, more starkly, one goal in 25 this campaign.
In July they splashed another £47.1m on Onana from Inter Milan, who has one of the best save percentages in the Premier League but has a habit of making calamitous errors.
While those signings could theoretically have paid off, and might still, putting the demands of a new manager before the longer view of the club is not usually conducive to long-term success.
Olise’s name is bound to come up considering he is linked with top-six clubs all the time.
Erik ten Hag is set to have a reduced say in the club’s policy, which has accommodated his preferences so far
The club spent £85.5m on Antony and £47.1m on Andre Onana, who Ten Hag knew at Ajax
Manchester City will reportedly compete for his signature in the summer while Chelsea and Liverpool were said to be monitoring the Crystal Palace star as recently as last month.
Jarrad Branthwaite is Everton’s prized defensive possession and they have reportedly slapped a £100m price tag on him to deter his admirers.
Whether United’s affection for the 21-year-old extends to a nine-figure sum remains to be revealed.
The Premier League still has to ratify Ratcliffe’s investment in United, but from there it will be full steam ahead.
He has already made a noticeable effort to connect with players and staff, meeting them at Old Trafford and their Carrington training centre.
Ratcliffe and INEOS director of sport Sir Dave Brailsford were pictured meeting manager Ten Hag as well as men’s team striker Rasmus Hojlund and women’s team players Millie Turner, Katie Zelem and Aoife Mannion last month.
Ratcliffe and Sir Dave Brailsford (right) have been visible presences at United, meeting staff ad players
Brailsford and Ratcliffe met a number of first-team, including Rasmus Hojlund, last month
Ratcliffe and Brailsford also met women’s team manager Marc Skinner, plus members of the club’s academy sides and performance staff during their visit.
They also went to Old Trafford for meetings with the wider club workforce and held an all-staff meeting as they get down to business at United.
It is a far more hands-on approach than that taken by the Glazer family, who draw ire for their absence from matches.