Similar to Lukaku: Man Utd could sign 5ft 11 star who’s scored every 67 mins under ETH

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It’s safe to say that throughout his time at Old Trafford, Erik ten Hag’s tendency to bring his previous teammates to Manchester United hasn’t gone all that well.

During his first summer in command, the Dutchman chose to bring Lisandro Martinez and Antony back together. The South American pair had previously been a member of the Ajax team that won titles in 2020–21 and 2021/22.

Patrice Evra calls Martinez one of the club’s “best signings” of recent years, despite injury concerns in the latter half of 2023. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Antony, who has only managed three assists and eight goals in 66 games since his £86 million arrival.

Following his acquisition of Tyrell Malacia and Wout Weghorst through his Dutch contacts, Ten Hag sought out two former teammates in the most recent summer transfer window: Andre Onana and Sofyan Amrabat. The 53-year-old had previously worked with both players at Ajax and Utrecht.

These two transactions have gone more or less as Antony’s have thus far, instead of Martinez’s. Amrabat, who started just seven Premier League games, is off to the AFCON, while Onana made a number of mistakes when the team was playing in the Champions League, particularly away to Bayern Munich and Galatasaray.

The idea that United may support the manager once more in his attempt to sign one of his old players raises red flags, but at least one of Ten Hag’s current targets has a proven track record.

Man Utd is after another Ajax player

According to a story published in the Mirror last week, the Red Devils are ‘keeping tabs’ on the talented Dutchman Brian Brobbey, a 21-year-old striker for the Eredivisie team. The club is reportedly interested in signing him.

Ten Hag, who gave the forward his Amsterdam debut, is rumoured to be looking to add a new striker this month to give Anthony Martial and Rasmus Hojlund some competition, even if the team can only afford a loan agreement.

Ajax Premier League Everton Transfers: Brian Blake
Brobbey won’t be permitted to leave on a temporary basis, so that could end any approach for him. However, if United can raise the money for a permanent approach, they should be able to sign a player who turned them down back in the summer of 2022—after returning to Ajax after a brief stint at RB Leipzig.

Ten Hag’s record for Brian Brobbey

The five-foot-11 marksman’s last decision to leave the Johan Cruyff Arena didn’t exactly go as planned; after joining the Bundesliga team in 2021, he made just 14 games in Germany, failing to score and contributing just three assists.

Moore, Craig, Rangers, Van, and Nistelrooy
Home comforts have been good to the Amsterdam native, as his record with the Dutch giants now stands at an incredible 40 goals in just 101 games in all competitions, despite the fact that he finally failed to get going during his single half-season at Leipzig.

Additionally successful in the younger ranks, having scored 37 goals in 41 games for Ajax’s U19 squad, Brobbey was given the opportunity to make an impression on Ten Hag’s first team in the 2020–21 campaign, and he went on to score six goals in just 19 appearances.

The in-demand player then scored seven more goals in just 13 appearances after returning to work under the former Utrecht coach on loan for the second half of 2021–2022, bringing his total under Ten Hag to 13 goals in just 32 games.

Ten Hag’s record for Brobbey







Played minutes




Time spent on each goal


Transfermarkt statistics.

Even though he frequently trailed the more seasoned Sebastian Haller, the one-cap Netherlands international scored once every 67 minutes while playing for United, and he has 13 goals in just 25 appearances this season.

There may be hope that the £49k-per-week star will succeed at the Theatre of Dreams like Martinez did, instead of Antony, given his obvious talent and easy fit into Ten Hag’s system. After all, he has what it takes to be a frightening Premier League striker.

The playing style of Brian Brobbey

Referred to as “The Brobbeast” by talent scout Jacek Kulig, Brobbey has been called by U23 scout and journalist Antonio Mango as a “powerhouse” who possesses the physical traits needed to lead the line in England’s premier league.

His resemblance to former United player Romelu Lukaku further establishes his credentials as a productive Premier League number nine. Former Leipzig manager Julian Nagelsmann said in 2021:

“His playing style and body are comparable to Romelu Lukaku’s. And if he could develop into a player with the same attributes, that would make us happy. To put the supporters’ minds at ease, nevertheless, it is undeniable that he is comparable to Lukaku.”

Their current performances also bear this similarity, as both players frequently attempt to get behind an opposing defence. The Roma star leads his European peers in progressive passes received (8.76 on average per 90), while young Brobbey averages 8.63.

Naturally, Lukaku’s two-year tenure at Old Trafford is not well remembered because of his “woeful” finishing, as journalist Samuel Luckhurst puts it. Nevertheless, the towering Belgian is a proven goal scorer, having netted 42 goals in just 96 games for the Red Devils.

At his peak, the 30-year-old scored 121 goals in 278 Premier League games, running defences ragged. However, he also struggled after a £97.5 million return to Chelsea in 2021, scoring just eight goals in the league that season.

United may be the ideal striker for a team that has scored the fourth fewest goals in the Premier League this year if they can acquire that healthy and productive version of Lukaku in the form of his likely successor, Brobbey.

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