Manchester United have decided to exercise their option of extending the deals of Ashley Young and Daley Blind to another year, hence have prevented the duo from leaving the club on a free transfer at the end of the season.
Sky Sports have confirmed that besides that aforementioned names, Sam Johnstone – who is on loan at Steve Bruce’s Aston Villa – has been awarded the similar fate as his contract is also extended by 12 months. The trio’s current Manchester United deal was due to expire at the end of the season, but will now run until the summer of 2019. Ashley Young has established himself as a first-team regular ahead of Luke Shaw and has – so far – played 21 Premier League fixtures, scoring twice and assisting thrice.
The Englishman’s versatility has allowed Jose Mourinho to not just use him as a left-back but has occasionally used him in absence of Antonio Valencia as well, when the Ecuadorian was recovering from his hamstring injury.
Daley Blind, on the other hand, has seen a completely different fate whatsoever. The former Ajax man played United’s first three fixtures before going missing from the first team sheet since September 30 to December 30. Till date, he has only made 5 Premier League appearances and has completed full 90 minutes on three occasions. So as things stand for the duo right now, Ashley Young is expected to stay with the club next season, while Daley Blind’s future has been put under heavy scrutiny.
In terms of domestic appearances, Mourinho used the versatile Dutchman in every competitive domestic and European cup match this season until January 2018 before the 27-year-old sustained an ankle problem in training at Carrington. As per the Times, “scans showed Blind suffered mild ligament damage, which is why he has not played since the FA Cup third round win over Derby County on January 5.”
Blind was heavily linked with a move away from Old Trafford over the January transfer window with the Serie A giants AS Roma looking at him as a possible (loan) replacement of now Chelsea wing-back Emerson Palmieri, but his father and agent Danny Blind confirmed that United were only interested in a permanent deal.
As far as the contracts are concerned, United have already extended the deals of Ander Herrera, Luke Shaw, and Juan Mata, keeping them at the club until 2019. While the likes of Marouane Fellaini and Zlatan Ibrahimovic will be the free agent by the end of the season, hence they are eligible to negotiate a deal with foreign clubs. Meanwhile, Carrick is retiring at the end of the season to join the club’s coaching staff.
Also, Sam Johnstone, who has been with United since 10, has also seen his current deal extended until 2019.