Rashford and Ten Hag
Striker Marcus Rashford has said that manager Erik ten Hag is 'a joy to work with' Oli SCARFF/AFP News

Erik ten Hag has reportedly asked Manchester United to secure a star midfielder who was previously rejected by then-boss Jose Mourinho.

It is not a hidden secret anymore that Manchester United want to add a new midfielder to their roster amid a shaky start to the 2023-24 Premier League. After Wolves cut through the Red Devils' mid-line in their opening encounter, Ten Hag and Co. suffered at Tottenham Hotspur with a 2-0 defeat.

With just a few days remaining in the summer window, Manchester United have come forward to show interest in Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) midfielder Marco Verratti. He is set to end his 11-year association with the Ligue 1 side. Manchester United will have Bayern Munich as competition in the race to sign 30-year-old Verratti, according to PSG Talk.

Mourinho rejected Verratti in 2018

Manchester United's former executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward had suggested the idea to sign Verrati and Raphael Varane during the 2018 summer transfer window. However, Mourinho just said the duo was out of their reach and therefore had not gone ahead with the moves, according to Manchester Evening News.

Instead, Manchester United had splurged £52m on Fred from Shakhtar Donetsk. The Old Trafford side, however, managed to land Varane eventually two years later. The French centre-back joined Manchester United from Real Madrid and in no time became a key member of their defence.

One of Manchester United's current concerns is their central midfield and Verratti could be a perfect solution for Ten Hag at present. The coveted player is known for his midfield control, precise passes, and pressure handling. The Red Devils are also believed to be looking to sell Scot McTominay, who has been at their set up since 2002.

With two games into the Premier League this season, Manchester United's midfield issues have already been exposed with the trio of Casemiro, Mason Mount and Bruno Fernandes not clicking. Verratti will most likely emerge as a starter ahead of Mount and Christian Eriksen, partnering Casemiro in a lethal midfield double.

The other midfielders who are on Manchester United's radar ahead of the conclusion of the summer market are Amadou Onana (Everton) and Ryan Gravenberch (Bayern Munich).

Verratti agrees personal terms with a Saudi club?

Manchester United's interest in Verratti is being talked about despite reports suggesting the Italian midfielder is close to joining Saudi Pro League side Al-Ahli. Verratti, who has decided to part ways with PSG after receiving verbal abuse from the club fans in May this year, has agreed to personal terms with Al-Ahli, who recently signed former Premier League starts such as Roberto Firmino (Liverpool), Édouard Mendy (Chelsea), and Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City).

PSG are planning to demand at least £51 million for Verratti, who could join Al-Ahli on a contract until 2026, according to transfer market expert Nicolo Schira. The Ligue 1 champions are looking to revive their current squad and the process has already seen the likes of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Sergio Ramos depart.

Marco Verratti at PSG: Stats

Meanwhile, Verratti returning to Italy is also on the cards, as per his agent Rafaela Pimenta. "Sooner or later an Italian thinks of going home. He [Verratti] always wants to return. I can't say that this is not the case for him," Pimenta said.

Verratti started his football career at his native club Pescara, after climbing through their youth academy. After spending four years with Pescara's senior side, Verratti moved to PSG in 2012. Over the years, the Italian midfielder has helped his side clinch nine Ligue 1 titles and was also a part of the side that finished as runners up in the UEFA Champions League in 2019-20.

In 416 matches for PSG in all competitions, Verratti has netted 11 goals while providing 61 assists.