Manchester United youngster Matthew "Matty" Willock looks set to complete a loan switch to Eredivisie side FC Utrecht before Thursday night's (31 August) transfer deadline, according to reports.
Dutch publication De Telegraaf claimed that the 21-year-old had emerged as the most likely midfielder to move to Stadion Galgenwaard after Utrecht also considered several other potential candidates from the same club amid doubts over the future of former Bursaspor target Yassin Ayoub, whose contract is due to expire next year.
The Mail subsequently reported that Willock has now travelled to the Netherlands in order to seal a season-long switch that was originally supposed to be signed off last week only for the Dutch outfit to take time to reassess their priorities following a 3-0 Europa League play-off round aggregate defeat to Zenit Saint Petersburg.
London native Willock was released by Arsenal aged 15 and later joined United after trials with a string of clubs including Sunderland and Reading. He initially impressed with the Under-18s and later helped the Under-21s to win back-to-back titles.
Along with Joel Pereira, Demetri Mitchell, Scott McTominay, Axel Tuanzebe, Josh Harrop, Angel Gomes, Kieran O'Hara and Zach Dearnley, Willock was one of several young hopefuls included in the senior matchday squad for a final day Premier League victory over Crystal Palace last term as Jose Mourinho rested several key players before the Europa League final.
Having also made the bench for a goalless draw with West Bromwich Albion in April, Willock, older brother of new Benfica signing Chris, looked all set to make his first-team debut following an injury to Eric Bailly only to be disappointingly told to stand down. Should the move to Utrecht go through, it will be his maiden loan stint away from Old Trafford.
United look set for an extremely quiet end to the summer window in general, with Mourinho seemingly content not to make any further splashy additions following the arrivals of Victor Lindelof, Romelu Lukaku and Nemanja Matic and the re-signing of injured striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The Portuguese was previously eager to recruit a new wide player, although it now seems that chief target Ivan Perisic could agree terms on a new contract with Inter Milan. Long-running speculation regarding a deal for Gareth Bale inevitably resurfaced again although always seemed unlikely to come to fruition, while talk of strengthening his full-back options also seems to have died down following links to Danny Rose and Serge Aurier.
The likes of Ashley Young and Marouane Fellaini do not look to be going anywhere, while it remains to be seen if Andreas Pereira will join Valencia on loan or else opt to stay put. Interestingly, initial reports from the Netherlands had suggested that the Belgian-born Brazilian was in line to join Utrecht having spent the early years of his development at PSV Eindhoven.