Ratcliffe could forget Olise with Man Utd move for £34m whiz who’s “similar to Saka”

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Although it hasn’t been formally approved, Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s planned 25% ownership of Manchester United has given fans a glimmer of optimism for a better future at Old Trafford. The INEOS CEO has already made all the correct statements in his previous public appearances.

With speculation already rife about potential investments the 71-year-old businessman could make in the playing squad this summer, he confessed that he is “very excited” about the idea of taking leadership of his boyhood club.

Michael Olise, a star player for Crystal Palace who has a release clause in his current contract that expires at the end of the season, is one of Ratcliffe’s top targets, according to a previous story from the Standard.

The former Reading player would seem to be a smart replacement for the struggling Antony, who has yet to score or provide an assist this season. However, the club appears to be investigating other right-wing options as well, since there is a young talent who is thriving in the Netherlands.

Man Utd considering a Michael Olise substitute

According to a report published late last month by journalist Christoper Michel, the Red Devils are reportedly interested in Johan Bakayoko, a winger for PSV Eindhoven. The 20-year-old has had a standout season in the Eredivisie.

The Belgian wizard, who has also drawn interest from Liverpool, is reportedly worth roughly €40 million (£34 million), according to Michel, making him a reasonably priced choice if a deal can be reached for something near to that amount.

Johan Bakayoko of the Premier League of Eindhoven
Given that recent talkSPORT sources suggest that the previously mentioned Olise might fetch a price “well in excess of £50m,” Bakayoko might therefore provide Erik ten Hag and company an excellent, reasonably priced substitute.

How Michael Olise and Johan Bakayoko are comparable

Starring in Holland is a different animal than performing in the Premier League, as United has seen with the case of Antony, who has only eight goals and three assists in 66 appearances for the team. Olise, however, at least has the advantage of his present experience playing English football.

That being said, with the in-demand gem scoring five goals and racking up an incredible 13 assists in 29 games across all competitions, it is difficult to overlook the influence Bakayoko is making for a high-flying PSV team in 2023–2024.

While making just nine appearances this season, Olise has only managed five goals and one assist; the Palace star has also been plagued by injury on a frequent basis while at Selhurst Park.

The fact that Bakayoko has 12 goals and 18 assists in just 66 games for his present team, compared to his 22-year-old counterpart’s surprisingly similar record of 11 goals and 20 assists from 80 games for the Eagles, further establishes Bakayoko’s reputation as a legitimate alternative.

Bakayoko vs. Olise: 2023–2024 league statistics



Bakayoko (Patagonia)










“Big chances” were produced



Important passes for each match



Per game, successful dribbles



Loss of possession throughout each game



won fouls for each game



Statistics sourced from Sofascore

Similar to Olise, the nine-cap Belgium international is a brilliant left-footer who usually plays on the right wing; statistics analyst Ben Mattinson even compared his profile to that of [Bukayo] Saka.

The pair’s dribbling skills demonstrate their similarity to the Arsenal player, who has played in 27 games this season and has assisted on 21 goals. Saka has averaged 2.04 successful take-ons and 5.11 progressive carries per 90 over the past 365 days, while Bakayoko has averaged 3.73 and 7.51 for those same two metrics.

Ibrahimovic, Zlatan (2016)/17
Even with Ratcliffe’s apparent interest in Olise, the former Anderlecht young asset is someone to keep an eye on as he appears to be a genuine creative outlet from the flanks.

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