Werder Bremen have somehow managed to push themselves into a corner over Tahith Chong. They want to take the Manchester United youngster on loan and have been very public about their pursuit of the player, as has his agent.
There was much confidence in the German media about a deal being roughly agreed, and it was even claimed earlier this week that Chong could leave United before their season ends, so he could go on Werder’s preseason training camp.
That camp starts on Friday in Austria, and things aren’t looking hopeful. Not only may Manchester United want to keep Chong until the end of the Europa League, in case their clearly tired players pick up injuries, but there’s also the chance the club insist he has some kind of holiday before starting all over again.
On Wednesday morning, we brought claims from Germany that Werder were getting the ‘jitters’ over a deal. It was dragging on more than they wanted, and there was worry other clubs could swoop in.
Now Bild make it sound like Werder are in all-out panic. The entire agreement is now in doubt, and Werder will have to play ‘poker’ with Manchester United.
The German newspaper say that ‘to put it politely’ the two clubs have ‘different ideas’ about the finances of a potential loan. As far as United have it, Werder can take Chong for two years but would have to pay a loan fee and cover the player’s €2.8m salary. On the other side, Werder only want to pay part of the salary, with no mention of a loan fee, and feel they’d be providing value to United as they could ‘increase Chong’s market value’.
That makes it sound like the Bundesliga club have convinced themselves of a structure and are now surprised Manchester United won’t agree to their optimistic plans.
Negotiations will continue, however, it’s clear Werder Bremen and Chong’s agent jumped the gun by speaking so optimistically, both on and off the record, about a deal being very close.