Football TransfersManchester United and Ajax Reached an Agreement of £46m Deal to Sign Lisandro Martinez.
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Manchester United and Ajax have agreed an agreement for defender Lisandro Martinez.

The Argentine, Lisandro Martinez missed Ajax training on Thursday while the parties worked out the payment mechanism for the £46 million transfer.

Lisandro had made it plain to Ajax that he wanted to move to the Premier League this summer and will reunite with his old manager Erik ten Hag, with whom he has a great bond.

On Wednesday, United director of football John Murtough and chief executive Richard Arnold met with Ajax counterparts Edwin van der Sar, Gerry Hamstra, and Klaas Jan Huntelaar before returning to Manchester. On Thursday, more meetings were held to iron out the kinks, and a deal was reached.

Lisandro’s drive to complete the transfer was crucial, as Ajax were originally hesitant to trade the 24-year-old, who was named the club’s player of the year last season.

They initially turned down offers from Arsenal and Manchester United, but Lisandro stepped in when it became evident that United was serious about pursuing the player, and the player obtained assurances from Ten Hag.

Meanwhile, Ajax have turned their focus to Rangers defender Calvin Bassey as a possible replacement for Martinez.

Lisandro, who idolizes legendary Manchester United defender Gabriel Heinze, has won three league titles since coming from Defensa y Justicia in 2019.

Lisandro, although not being the tallest centre-back at 5ft 9ins, reads the game well, is good in one-on-one situations, and is a strong passer of the ball. In Amsterdam, he is a fan favorite who can play center back, left back, and holding midfield, where former United defender Jaap Stam believes he can succeed.

‘What matters is that a defender be astute,’ remarked Stam. ‘That was created by Lisandro Martinez. There are several swift attackers in England who are brutal in counters. What matters is that a defense is astute and astute. Martinez, on the other hand, can play in front of the defense because he is comfortable on the ball. And I don’t rule out Ten Hag using him there.’

United have six senior defenders on their books and hope to sell up to three of them, with Axel Tuanzebe, Phil Jones, and Eric Bailly being the most likely candidates.