Manchester United are being tipped to re-sign Memphis Depay but there’s one big reason it probably won’t happen..

December 29, 2022

Manchester United are reportedly struggling for transfer funds heading into the January transfer window.

Despite Erik ten Hag’s desire to sign a goalscorer, The Athletic report United are likely going to have to settle for a loan deal.

And with Joao Felix potentially expensive even on loan, one common name being touted is former Manchester United forward Memphis Depay, report The Telegraph and BBC Sport.

Depay signed for United for £31 million in 2015 before being sold in 2017 after failing to live up to expectations.

But a deal for the Dutchman would have one large problem, which we will get into…

Depay optics worse than actual signing

Memphis Depay actually probably would be a very astute addition for United, if forced to shop in the bargain bin.

He knows the club, has unfinished business and a point to prove, and could slot in ideally as a back-up to Anthony Martial while being able to play multiple positions.

At 28 he is a good age and showed at the World Cup he is still a player with plenty of quality to his game, which Erik ten Hag could probably harness well.

Unfortunately the bigger issue is the optics of a potential deal, that this really would be a last resort, rather than one Manchester United have pushed for.

United have had options to re-sign Depay in the past and declined. Moving for him now would highlight how desperate the need for a forward currently is.

One bigger problem with Depay move

There is one big problem with the suggestions United could target Depay, and that’s his already scheduled visit to Old Trafford after the transfer window closes.

Manchester United face Depay’s Barcelona in the Europa League knockouts. There is very little chance of the La Liga side sanctioning his exit to the Red Devils.

If a loan deal was struck, it is believed Depay still would be eligible to face Barcelona, as they were a Champions League team, now entering the Europa League.

Barcelona were once embarrassed by loanee Philippe Coutinho with Bayern. It is unthinkable they would knowingly risk a repeat and allow Depay to knock them out of Europe. For this reason a permanent sale would seem unlikely too.

If Depay were not eligible to play, then this wouldn’t be very appealing to the player himself…

A loan move for a similar player (answers on a postcard) could be possible – but Depay himself, probably not.