While Manchester United always kept an eye on things in Scandinavia, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s confirmation as new manager might see the Red Devils scout even more in the area.
We say this because it appears they’ve already started doing so, as Aftonbladet reported on Monday the club’s chief scout, Thomas Möller Nielsen, had travelled to Sweden to watch Benjamin Nygren.
Despite only being 17, the striker has started all four of IFK Göteborg’s games in the Allsvenskan so far this season, scoring three goals and picking up three assists.
The stats only help emphasise how well the youngster has started the campaign and it appears Manchester United wanted someone to see this first hand.
Prior to the game, Aftonbladet managed to quickly speak to the scout, who explained Nygren caught his eye at the end of the 2018 season and was ‘aware of his progress’ before claiming he was actually there to ‘watch older players, scouting for the club’s first-team’.
Speaking to the newspaper after the game, the young forward was asked about Manchester United’s interest in him, and his reaction was remarkably calm.
He said: “If I’m going to be completely honest, I don’t really look at it. I get to hear it more from people who interview me. It’s clear that it’s fun, but I cannot focus on who is watching me, otherwise I focus on the wrong stuff. The match is played on the pitch, not in the stands.”
Nygren is contracted to IFK Göteborg until December 31st 2020, and while the Swedish club and the youngster are currently in talks about a potential new deal, Aftonbladet reveal they ‘want to get paid for their talent’, which would help their ‘constricted’ financial situation.
In the past, clubs such as Bayern Munich, Manchester City and Inter have all been reported as interested, while Ajax and other Premier League clubs were present at Monday’s game against Helsingborg, which ended in a 3-1 win, with Nygren walking away with a goal and an assist.
Thanks to Ronny for the heads-up.