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Manchester United enter talks with Barcelona over Ousmane Dembele loan

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The France international has fallen out of favor at Barcelona

FC Barcelona v Elche CF - Joan Gamper Trophy Photo by Joan Valls/Urbanandsport /NurPhoto via Getty Images

As the extended Summer transfer window is closing and talks with Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho appear to be going nowhere, United appear to be switching their focus to Barcelona’s winger Ousmane Dembele.

According to Sky Sports, United are close to completing a loan deal — with an option to make the deal permanent for £55million — for the 23-year-old France international who has fallen out of favor at Barcelona. Dembele making just nine appearances in all competitions last season.

Dembele is still regarded as one of the world’s best young talents but his career has been riddled with injury since he joined in 2017 as a replacement for Neymar.

A year-long loan with a £55million option would be quite a “steal” for United, considering Dembele signed for Barca for £135m when he left Borussia Dortmund.

Many feel that Dembele would be worth the risk but considering his knack of picking up injuries and tendency to arrive at practice late on several occasions there are concerns at Old Trafford. Spanish football expert Sid Lowe commented recently on ESPN FC:

“I think a club like United, who look at a player like Dembele, may well look at the fact that in three years at Barcelona he hasn’t had the chance with any consistency to really make an impact.

“But on those occasions when he’s been fit, he has had a relatively significant contribution.

“There have been moments where you watch him play and think ‘this guy is absolutely brilliant’.

“The natural talent is there without any doubt and I think any club looking at him, if they think they can get him cheap, would at least think ‘this might be risky, but it’s possibly a risk worth taking’.

United would likely cover the full cost of Dembele’s wages during the course of his loan, and while the player was said to reluctant to leave Barcelona, the Catalan club are apparently more than willing to move on from the talented forward.