Manchester United have been sent a warning about talks over a new contract for wonderkid Alejandro Garnacho, with the club keen to keep him at Old Trafford.
The 18-year-old has hugely impressed in what can be considered as his breakout season at United, scoring two and assisting four goals in the 16 appearances he has made so far this campaign.
His direct running and skill on the ball are two of his key attributes, and manager Erik ten Hag has spoken highly of the youngster.
Speaking after last weekend’s 2-1 win over Manchester City – in which Garnacho came off the bench to set up Marcus Rashford’s late winner – the Dutchman said: “He has improved a lot in attitude and all-round play and he has a skill that I don’t see many players in the Premier League having: he beats players one on one.
“You now see how he’s acting as a team player, and with his individual skills, that can make the difference. For him, it’s to keep going in the process because it’s not done. But there is a lot to come.”
Garnacho’s current United contract runs out in the summer of 2024, but the Red Devils are in talks over a new deal to reflect this season’s performances.
However, according to The Independent, the winger – who has represented Spain and Argentina at youth level – is holding out for more money after the club offered him a £20,000-a-week deal, an upgrade on his reported current salary of £7,000-a-week.
And ex-United midfielder/forward Alan Smith has warned his former employers about the ongoing current talks.
Alan Smith on Man Utd, Garnacho talks
Smith, who played for United between 2004 and 2007, explained the importance of United keeping Garnacho for many years to come, for a number of different reasons.
Smith, speaking to MrCasinova.com, explained: “I think United aren’t really used to losing young players to another club.
“Over the last few years, that’s been a disappointment to people – we’ve either struggled to bring young players through or they’ve left for other clubs, which was never the scenario 10 years ago.
“I don’t think the fans would think we’ve lost our star man, but from a club standpoint and having the status to being able to hold on to these young players, it is really important to build for the future.
“The Manchester United way is that you’ve always had young players knocking on the door to try and get into the first team, so if you can hold on to those players, it’s something that the United fans will want to see.”