Tyrell Malacia: Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag makes Feyenoord left-back his first Old Trafford signing

Tyrell Malacia has become the first signing of Erik ten Hag’s Manchester United reign after the left-back completed a £14.7m move from Feyenoord.

The 22-year-old has signed a four-year contract at Old Trafford, with the option to extend for a further year.

United agreed a package with the Eredivisie side last week worth around an initial £13m, with a further £1.7m in add-ons and a potential sell-on clause.

United accelerated their interest in the Netherlands international in an attempt to beat off competition from French club Lyon.

Malacia is a talent Ten Hag knows well, having heavily scouted him as Ajax head coach. He fits the profile of player the Dutchman wants at Old Trafford and the manager believes he will specifically improve United in transition phases.

Malacia had been a target for French side Lyon

Malacia appeals to Ten Hag given his speed, positional awareness, high interception rate, and ability to attack space.

There is credence at Carrington that he has the tools to become an elite full-back and can develop into precisely that under the 52-year-old’s guidance.

The club were measured in pursuing this deal, waiting for Feyenoord to set a price with Lyon first before acting on interest so they were not over-quoted a valuation.

Feyenoord defender Tyrell Malacia
Malacia has won five caps for the Netherlands

It is a clear strategy also reflected in their move for Arsenal target Lisandro Martinez, who has told Ajax he wants to leave this summer to play in the Premier League.

Malacia shares an agency – HCM Sports Management – with Frenkie de Jong; the club’s premier target this summer. The same agency also represents Donny van de Beek and Victor Lindelof.

Ronaldo wants to leave | Eriksen agrees in principle to join Man Utd

Malacia’s signing comes after Cristiano Ronaldo informed the club he wants to leave this summer in order to play Champions League football amid concern from the Portugal forward at United’s lack of transfer activity this summer.

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Dharmesh Sheth says Christian Eriksen has agreed a deal in principle to join Manchester United.

But the signing of Malacia could soon be followed by the arrival of Christian Eriksen after the Denmark international agreed in principle to join United on a free transfer.

The future of Ronaldo though remains unclear, with United unsure whether the 37-year-old will fly out with the team on Friday for their pre-season tour of Thailand and Australia.

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Kaveh Solhekol explains what could happen next for Cristiano Ronaldo and Manchester United after it was revealed he wants to leave the club this summer.

Ronaldo was absent for pre-season training on Monday morning, but it is understood his absence from training was due to family reasons, with United accepting this explanation.

United’s position on Ronaldo remains that he has a year remaining on his contract and is not for sale, despite his desire to quit Old Trafford.

Telles and Williams futures in doubt

With Malacia’s move confirmed, United may now consider offers for left-back Alex Telles.


Telles has two years left on his contract and United have the option to extend for a further year.

United will also discuss Brandon Williams’ immediate future. All parties will discuss whether his development is best served by staying at the club – or going out on loan to get regular football.

Williams made 26 Premier League appearances on loan at Norwich City last season.

‘Malacia can change the way United attack’

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Michael Bridge and Anton Toloui update the latest on Manchester United’s interest for Feyenoord left-back Tyrell Malacia.

Sky Sports News reporter Anton Toloui:

“This is an interesting one, left-back is where Man United are well stacked. There’s not necessarily a most desperate need for them.

“One person I speak to say he’s the best left-back in the Eredivisie. Malacia is rapid, quick and loves to get forward. You see lots of flashy recovery tackles which look great but also worries me, when a defender has to go back.

“He puts in so much yardage, he’s keen to get involved in the play going forwards which is what Man United fans want to see. I can see why there’s interest from United as such a dynamic player can change the way you attack.”

Analysis: Malacia excellent in both penalty areas

Sky Sports football journalist Sam Blitz:

“Erik Ten Hag was known for his attacking philosophy at Ajax with some slick passing – Malacia fits the bill in these two areas of the pitch.

“Going forwards, the 22-year-old completed more shots and take-ons than any other defender in the Eredivisie last season.

“The Netherlands international is comfortable on the ball too. Only Ajax’s Daley Blind touched the ball more times and completed more final third passes than Malacia out of all the Eredivisie defenders. Malacia’s six completed through balls is also a divisional high for defenders in the Dutch top flight.

“And all this attacking play is backed up by some solidity at the back. No Eredivisie-based left-back completed more tackles than the 22-year-old last season, while only title-winning Blind managed to take the ball off opponents more times in the middle and attacking third than Malacia.”

Man Utd fixtures: Ten Hag debut against Brighton on Sky

The opening round of 22/23 Premier League games
The opening round of 22/23 Premier League games

Erik ten Hag’s first Premier League game as Manchester United manager will be against Brighton at Old Trafford, live on Sky Sports, on the opening Super Sunday of the 2022/23 season.

After facing Graham Potter’s Seagulls on Sunday August 7, live on Sky Sports, United travel to Brentford in the second round of fixtures before hosting rivals Liverpool in a blockbuster early-season clash on the weekend of August 20.

United’s trip to the Etihad Stadium for the first Manchester derby of the season on October 1 kicks off a daunting month which sees Ten Hag’s side travel to Everton and Chelsea and host Tottenham, Newcastle and West Ham.

The final game before the season pauses for the winter World Cup will be against Fulham on the weekend of November 12/13. United then return to action on Boxing Day at Fulham.

2023 will be ushered in by a home match against promoted Bournemouth. Premier League champions Manchester City are next up at Old Trafford on January 14, the return trip to Anfield on March 4, while United conclude their season at home to Fulham on May 28.

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