Approach made: Man Utd now moving quickly to replace departing player with star hailed by Klopp

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In order to increase the number of goalkeepers at Old Trafford and provide Andre Onana with some competition, Manchester United manager Erik Ten Hag has reportedly made moves.

The goalkeeper’s target is who?

The Daily Mail reports that Manchester United has already contacted Benfica regarding custodian Odysseas Vlachodimos as they try to find a quick replacement in net amid reports that Dean Henderson is negotiating a transfer to Selhurst Park.

The goalkeeping position at the Premier League giants has to be replaced after Matej Kovar was transferred to Bayer Leverkusen and Nathan Bishop left for Sunderland.

Fabrizio Romano, an Italian transfer specialist, provided a new update on the possibilities surrounding Vlachodimos’ probable transfer to Manchester United, saying on X: “As was reported yesterday, Manchester United is aware of the terms of the Odysseas Vlachodimos contract. Since he is anticipated to depart the club before the conclusion of the window, he was not included in the Benfica squad last week. Deal with Manchester United would only proceed if Dean Henderson left the organisation.

Samuel Soares, a young custodian for Benfica, has recently been preferred over Vlachodimos, and his manager, Roger Schmidt, has acknowledged that he is pleased to bring some “new energy in the custodian position” to the team.

Would Manchester United be wise to bring in Vlachodimos?

The Manchester Evening News reports that Manchester United must immediately get someone into the facility at Old Trafford to aid with the goalkeeping position’s shortage, which has grown as a result of veteran Tom Heaton’s calf injury.

In addition to offering some peace as an alternative to Onana at the club, Vlachodimos has a reputable record and is a seasoned custodian who would be a better choice to place behind the Cameroon star than Henderson.

The 29-year-old has established himself as the final line of defence for Primeira Liga champions Benfica, keeping 94 clean sheets in 225 games across all competitions. According to Transfermarkt, this is an impressive rate.

In 2022, following the Reds’ 3-1 victory over Benfica away from home in the quarterfinals of the Champions League, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was eager to applaud Vlachodimos, according to BT Sport cited by Reuters, saying: “We should have scored much more. Credit to him, in my opinion, especially because of their custodian. The best player on their team most likely was their custodian. He made a few really fantastic stops, despite the fact that we played brilliantly.

Vlachodimos has a high clean sheet percentage compared to his positional peers in Europe’s next eight divisions below the continent’s top five leagues; according to FBRef, 56.3% of his last 90 minutes over the previous 365 days resulted in a shutout, placing him in the 99th percentile for that statistic.

It appears as though Manchester United now has the opportunity to sign the Greece custodian before the transfer window closes. While not a particularly exciting move, it may be sensible.

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