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Ajax’s Steven Bergwijn hints at Antony exit amid Manchester United links

Ajax’s Steven Bergwijn hints at Antony exit amid Manchester United links

Ajax attacker Steven Bergwijn has seemingly dropped a hint to suggest that teammate Antony could be leaving the club this summer, amid reported interest from Manchester United.

Antony was a crucial cog in Erik ten Hag‘s Ajax side who won the Eredivisie title last season, and the 22-year-old finished the campaign with 12 goals and 10 assist in 33 games across all competitions.

Ten Hag is keen to reunite with the Brazilian at Old Trafford, with the Red Devils allegedly preparing to make an improved offer having already seen a bid of around €80m (£67.9m) rejected last week.

Antony was left out of the Ajax squad for Sunday’s 1-0 Eredivisie win away against Sparta Rotterdam amid uncertainty over his future, but head coach Alfred Schreuder insists that he is confident that the attacker will remain with the Dutch giants this summer.

Speaking to reporters on Sunday, Alfred Schreuder said: “I want Antony to stay. I am assuming that the club will not sell him. The money that is being thrown around these days is crazy. But I would not find it okay if we sell another player. We are in a powerful position, financially.

“Yes, my feeling is good. I understand Antony. But you play for Ajax. We are playing Champions League football. I don’t think Manchester United are playing Champions League football.”

Steven Bergwijn in action for the Netherlands in March 2022© Reuters

Bergwijn – who joined Ajax from Tottenham Hotspur earlier this summer – scored the only goal of the game to help Schreuder’s side secure all three points against Sparta Rotterdam, and after the match the Dutchman was questioned about the future of his teammate Antony.

“I don’t know exactly what’s going on, but everyone has dreams. If it continues, I wish him the best. I’d be sad if he left, but everyone has dreams,” Bergwijn told NOS.

Meanwhile, Ajax captain Dusan Tadic has spoken highly about Antony and revealed that he has spoken to the nine-cap Brazil international about his future.

“[Antony’s] a great player, we know that. We miss him and have to wait and see what will happen,” Tadic told reporters, via Voetbal International.

“I spoke to him, yes. You always try to talk to players. He is 22 years old, a grown man. He knows what to do. You can always say what you want, but he makes a decision with the club.

“You know what kind of player Antony is. He is a very dynamic dribbler. But without him you have a different dynamic. We have good players, but it’s a little different. Antony is a great player who can play in any competition.”

Ajax attacker Antony pictured in February 2022© Reuters

Earlier this summer, Antony refused to rule out the prospect of leaving Ajax before the transfer window shuts on September 1, telling De Telegraaf: “No, to be perfectly honest I can’t (assure Ajax fans on staying at the club). What I can say is that I want to come to the right decision with my family, business partners and Ajax, which is good for everyone.

“In the end, God determines my future. I am very happy at Ajax, I have a contract until the summer of 2025 and I will give everything for this beautiful club for every second.

“I wear the shirt with pride and from day one I feel at home. If we all decide that I will stay here, then I know that this is the best thing for me and the club.

“It’s not like I have to leave. Now I am focusing on playing football and have put all other matters in the hands of my agents and my brother. They will advise me on what is best.”

Antony, who still has three years on his contract in Amsterdam, has made a total of 82 appearances for Ajax since joining from Sao Paulo in 2020, scoring 24 goals and registering 22 assists.

Man United are also interested in PSV Eindhoven attacker Cody Gakpo, with one report claiming that they have agreed personal terms with the 23-year-old who is believed to be valued between £30m and £40m.

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