Christian Eriksen has been confirmed as Erik ten Hag’s second signing after Manchester United announced the Danish playmaker’s arrival on a free transfer, the 30-year-old having agreed a three-year deal.
Eriksen, who follows Tyrell Malacia, said: “Manchester United is a special club, and I cannot wait to get started. I have had the privilege of playing at Old Trafford many times but to do it in the red shirt of United will be an amazing feeling.
“I have seen Erik’s work at Ajax and know the level of detail and preparation that he and his staff put into every day. It is clear that he is a fantastic coach. Having spoken with him and learned more about his vision and the way he wants the team to play, I am even more excited for the future.
“I still have major ambitions in the game, there is a huge amount that I know I can achieve, and this is the perfect place to continue my journey.”
Eriksen spent the final months of last season at Brentford on a short-term contract after returning from his cardiac arrest at Euro 2020.
John Murtough United’s football director, said: “Christian has been one of the best attacking midfielders in Europe throughout his career. It is no surprise that he had so many options this summer, so we are really happy that he was convinced that this is the right club for him.
“In addition to his outstanding technique, Christian will add valuable experience and leadership skills to the squad, and we are looking forward to seeing the benefits of these qualities on the pitch this coming season and beyond.”
United are also confident of also recruiting the Ajax defender Lisandro Martínez, though Eriksen and the Argentinian – should the latter be signed in time – are not expected to join the pre-season tour which ends next Saturday. Cristiano Ronaldo, who wants to leave and is not on the trip because of a family issue, is also almost certain not to fly to Australia.
Ten Hag also wants to sign Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong but the deal has stalled due to the Catalan club owing the playmaker about £17m in deferred wages. Even if De Jong has not arrived by the start of the season on 7 August United will continue to pursue him but are prepared to walk away should the wage issue between the player and Barça prove insurmountable.