A month ago, Manchester United was the favourite. But now it’s back to square one.

Kim Min-jae has been perfect in Serie A all season. From his debut season in Italy, Kim quickly became Napoli’s first-choice centre-back, leading Napoli’s high-flying campaign to their first Serie A title in 33 years.

The Red Devils have been keeping tabs on Kim since the start of the season, sending scouts to Napoli and becoming more active in the latter stages of the campaign. On April 13, British media outlet Express named Kim as the No. 1 centre-back target for the next summer transfer window, while the UK’s Daily Mail said, “Kim has a £39m buyout clause, which United are keen to pursue.”먹튀검증

The transfer speculation continued to grow. On 15 May, reports emerged in Italy that Kim was close to completing a move to United. Italian outlet Il Matino reported, “Kim Min-jae has agreed to join Man United. “The club is already in talks with the player and brokers have convinced him to move to the English Premier League (EPL),” the Italian outlet reported.

The transfer speculation intensified day by day. On the 20th, following Il Martino’s report of a move to Man United, it was reported that Kim had bought a villa in Manchester. ‘Il Matino’ reported on the 20th, “The deal between Kim Min-jae and Manchester United appears to be virtually complete. Kim has already purchased a luxury villa in the Alderley Edge area near Manchester. He has signed a contract with United for an annual salary of 9 million euros (approximately 12.8 billion won).”

However, there is another contender emerging that is not United. It’s Newcastle United, the Premier League’s “new richest” club. “Kim Min-jae’s move to Man United is thrown into further doubt as Premier League rivals leapfrog,” the UK’s Express reported on the 27th.

“Newcastle could try to hijack the deal by outbidding United for Kim,” the publication continued. Newcastle have received a huge amount of money from the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund’s purchase of the club since last season and have been steadily strengthening their squad, with Kim on the list of targets.

The Express quoted Portuguese outlet UOL Esports as saying that Newcastle are slowly pulling ahead in the race to sign Kim. “It is widely believed that United are looking to make a £52 million bid for Kim Min-jae. However, Newcastle are competing with United for Kim and have recently gained the upper hand in the race for his signature.” We’ll have to wait until the end of the season to find out where Kim’s impending move to United will end up.

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