Jamie Carragher pays ultimate compliment to 'outstanding' Man Utd target after latest performance

Manchester United are keen on signing this 'special' player in the summer.

Manchester United have been lining up new defensive reinforcements ahead of the summer transfer window as they look to part ways with several of their own players and kickstart a new era with Sir Jim Ratcliffe on board.

One of the main targets said to be on the radar is Everton's Jarrad Branthwaite and Football Insider reported earlier this month that the Reds are 'leading the race' for his signature. The 21-year-old has been turning heads with his impressive performances at centre-back, as Tottenham Hotspur and Real Madrid are also keen.

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Naturally, the Toffees do not want to lose Branthwaite at the end of the season and have reportedly placed a staggering £100 million price tag on his head. However, with relegation still very much a concern for Sean Dyche and his side, Everton may have their hands forced in the summer if they face the drop.

Their latest push to put daylight between them and the bottom three did not go entirely to plan as Crystal Palace held the Blues to a 1-1 draw at Goodison Park. Branthwaite put in a solid shift alongside centre-back partner James Tarkowski, contributing four interceptions and two tackles, as well as winning eight of all ten attempted duels.

After the match, Jamie Carragher had a lot of praise for the young defender and admitted that Branthwaite could be the difference between Everton staying up or being relegated this season.

"I think he is [special]. And what is really special as well is the amount of centre-backs we have in the Premier League aged 21 or younger," the former Liverpool star said during Sky Sports' Monday Night Football coverage.

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"Branthwaite has been outstanding, Murillo I think has been outstanding. But I think this lad has been pretty special and he’s a big part of why in my eyes Everton still have a great chance of staying up, him and his partnership with [James] Tarkowski."

Towards the end of 2023, United made Branthwaite their 'primary defensive target' and now the interest has stepped up, with other interested clubs very much in the picture too.

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