Everton confirm previous approach for Van de Beek

Martin Macdonald
Solskjaer promises Van de Beek will become ‘massively important’ to Man Utd

Everton technical director Marcel Brands has confirmed that the club made an approach to sign Manchester United midfielder Donny van de Beek during the summer.

Van de Beek arrived at Old Trafford last season as the club's marquee acquisition, signed for €40 million from Ajax.

However, he has struggled to make an impact since making the move, whether that be due to his own poor form or a lack of opportunities given to him by manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Since signing, he has started just four Premier League matches and 17 matches in all competitions.

He was tipped for a transfer away from Man Utd in the summer transfer window, and it seems Everton were keen to bring him to Goodison Park.

“We had him on our list. At the beginning of the transfer window, we enquired at United, then it was impossible,” he told NOS.

“At the end of the window, I received a call from Guido Albers, his agent, that he might be rented out after all. But at the last minute it was cancelled. Stopped again.”

Van de Beek's frustrations

The Dutchman has played just 141 minutes of football in 2020/21, and his frustrations could be seen by all in Man Utd's Champions League match against Villarreal last week.

With the game at 1-1, Solskjaer opted to bring on Nemanja Matic and Fred instead of him in midfield, and following the substitutions he could be seen throwing chewing gum towards the pitch.

Solskjaer would say afterwards that he understands Van de Beek's feelings, but insists he doesn't have space for sulking players in his squad.

"I manage a squad full of international footballers, competitive footballers who want to make a difference, want to play. They all want to be on the pitch, of course they do," he said.

"Donny was ready to come on [against Villarreal], as all the players should be. I've probably been a substitute more than anyone in this club and you have to be ready all the time.

"I've not been very happy a few times, but that's just a decision the manager makes. Alex (Telles) was coming off as a left-back and Fred did that job well.

"I understand the frustration. Every player is keen to play. That's got to be built into energy and some determination for when you get on and then show me. That is not just Donny, that is all the players.

"If we're going to be successful together, we know that we need positive energy.

"We can't have sulkers, but Donny has never affected his team-mates negatively.

"As soon as I see players affecting the team negatively that's a different scenario and I'll probably be a little bit firmer."